Swiss court clears Semenya to compete without medication during appeal

Caster Semenya has been provisionally cleared to defend her 800 metres world title, after a Swiss court suspended the controversial ruling that would have forced her to take testosterone-reducing medication to compete.

The Olympic champion, 28, expressed her gratitude and said she hoped to be able to "run free" again after the Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland said it had "super-provisionally" told the world governing body, the International Association of Athletics Federations, it cannot apply its rules while her appeal is ongoing.

South Africa’s Caster Semenya will be free to run until her appeal is ongoing.Credit:AP

If the testosterone rules stay suspended, Semenya would likely be clear to run in the 800m for the remainder of the Diamond League and, crucially, be able to defend her title at the World Championships in Doha, Qatar, in September.

Last month Semenya lost her challenge to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the implementation of a restriction on testosterone levels in female runners. The South African lodged an appeal to the federal court, citing the need to defend "fundamental human rights". "I hope following my appeal I will once again be able to run free," she said.

Semenya's lawyers said there would be another decision by the supreme court after the IAAF makes its arguments to the court that the rules should stand. The court, meanwhile, confirmed it had "super-provisionally instructed the IAAF to suspend the application of the 'eligibility regulations for the female classification for athletes with differences of sex development' with respect to the claimant, until the decision on the request for issuance of provisional measures. It is not known when the Swiss Federal Supreme Courts will issue an interlocutory order concerning these provisional measures."

The IAAF said it had yet to receive notification of the decision. Semenya confirmed she would race in the 3000m at the Diamond League Prefontaine Classic.

The IAAF had set a deadline of a month ago for DSD athletes to submit samples showing a testosterone level below five nanomoles per litre, which they must maintain over the next 4½ months.

The Telegraph, London

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