Caster Semenya, the two-time Olympic 800m champion who now races longer distances due to a rule capping testosterone levels in middle-distance events, is on the 5000m entry list for the world championships that start next week in Eugene, Oregon.
Semenya, who did not originally qualify for worlds but moved up after higher-ranked women didn’t enter, will be added to the South African team that was originally announced without her name last week, a federation spokesperson said Friday.
Semenya’s last global meet was the 2017 World Championships, where she won a third world title in the 800m and took bronze in the 1500m.
In 2019, a World Athletics rule went into effect that capped athlete testosterone levels in women’s events from the 400m through the mile for athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD). World Athletics said that no female athletes would have a level above the cap — five nanomoles per liter — unless they had a DSD or a tumor.
Semenya made multiple unsuccessful appeals. Her latest, and perhaps last, to the European Court of Human Rights last year, has not been adjudicated.
Over the last three years, Semenya joined a soccer club, then returned to the track and moved down to the 200m and finally up to the 5000m.
She did not qualify for the Tokyo Olympics. Nor did she qualify outright for these world championships based on her best time this season and world ranking, missing the initial 42-runner cutoff by two spots in the world rankings (and by three ranking points out of more than 1,100).
Semenya moved up the qualifiers list when other higher-ranked runners did not enter worlds. That list included reigning world champion Hellen Obiri of Kenya, who is entered solely in the 10,000m.
Elsewhere, Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan entered the 1500m, 5000m and 10,000m but is expected to drop at least one of the events. Hassan won gold in the 5000m and 10,000m and bronze in the 1500m in Tokyo.
Bahamian Shaunae Miller-Uibo, the two-time Olympic 400m champion, is entered in both the 200m and 400m, which overlap. Her agency said Friday that she plans to contest solely the 400m.
Many top Cuban athletes are not entered at worlds after reports of athletes leaving the national team.
Cubans not on the entry list include Juan Miguel Echevarria, the Olympic long jump silver medalist, the world’s top two men’s triple jumpers this year in Jordan Diaz Fortun and Andy Diaz and Reynier Mena, who on Sunday ran the world’s third-fastest 200m this year, bringing his personal best down from to 20.04 to 19.63.
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