May 17, 2022

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Caster Semenya says she is ‘supernatural’ as she targets Olympic 200m

Caster Semenya says she is 'supernatural' as she targets Olympic 200m 1

"I am supernatural"

Caster Semenya says she is 'supernatural' as she targets Olympic 200m 2
Caster Semenya won a 200m event in Pretoria on Friday

Two-time Olympic 800m champion Caster Semenya says she is “supernatural” as she confidently targets the 200m at Tokyo 2020.

The 29-year-old cannot compete in events between 400m and a mile without taking testosterone-reducing drugs after a World Athletics rule change.

South African Semenya ran 200m in 23.49 seconds – 0.69secs outside the Olympic qualifying time – at an event in Pretoria on Friday.

“I call myself supernatural,” she said.

The three-time world 800m champion, who spoke of her decision to switch to the 200m in an Instagram post on Friday, must bring her time down to 22.80secs before 29 June to qualify for the South African Olympic team.

“We are chopping the times and I call myself supernatural. I can do anything I want,” she added.

“I always challenge myself. This was not an easy decision to make.

“I am used to running two laps and then you come and run half a lap. You have to adjust, which is not easy, but anything is possible.”

If Semenya qualifies for the Olympics – which begins on 24 July – she would be set to compete against Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith, who won 200m gold at the 2019 World Championships.

Semenya, who won Olympic gold in the 800m in 2012 and 2016, missed the chance to defend her world 800m title in Doha last year, having failed in her bid to prevent the governing body’s rule change.

World Athletics argued female athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD) – such as Semenya – have “a competitive advantage”.

In February, Semenya competed in her first track meeting since last June with victory in the 300m in Johannesburg, winning her race in a national record of 36.78secs.

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