Semenya remains in limbo despite coach's claims

There was a false start to the new year for Caster Semenya yesterday. It began with Michael Seme, coach of the athlete who won the women's 800m title at the World Championships in Berlin last summer, proclaiming, "She's going to run in international events," and speaking of his teenage charge challenging for World Junior Championship, African Championship and Commonwealth Games gold medals in the year that lies ahead.

His words gave the impression in South Africa that Semenya's delicate situation had finally been resolved by the sport's governing body, the International Association of Athletics Federations. That, however, is definitively not the case. The athlete from the Limpopo region remains in a state of limbo.

The IAAF has yet to reach a decision on Semenya's future after conducting gender tests on the South African runner, who turned 19 last week. The governing body remains in talks with Semenya and her lawyers, Dewey and LeBoeuf. "All the parties are still in negotiations," Angelo Kakolyris, a spokesman for the law firm, said. "We're optimistic that there's going to be a positive resolution for all parties concerned."

Later in the day, coach Seme backed down from his earlier comments, saying: "Just listen to the lawyers."

"We are still in the same position as before – no official IAAF comment until we have finished the inquiry – and I can't tell you how long the inquiry will take either," said an IAAF spokesman, Nick Davies.

Semenya has never been under any formal suspension. She is free to compete as a woman, pending the IAAF's ruling.

It is unlikely that Semenya would be allowed to take part in an international event until her case had been resolved, although she has been back in training for the past two months and is planning to compete in the upcoming domestic outdoor track season in South Africa. According to Seme, the opening race on her schedule is the first in the series of Yellow Pages meetings in Port Elizabeth on 18 February. "She will run in at least three Yellow Pages races this year," he said.

Semenya's future, however, remains far from clear. The IAAF has yet to comment on claims made in the Australian press in September that tests had found the athlete to be a hermaphrodite, with both female and male characteristics. If that were the case, she might be required to undergo gender realignment surgery before being allowed to compete as a woman.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Angel Di Maria is shown the red card
tech
Sport
Roger Federer after his win over Tomas Berdych
sport
Life and Style
News in briefs: big pants in 'Bridget Jones's Diary'
fashionBig knickers are back
Sport
James Milner is set to sign for Liverpool this week despite rival interest from Arsenal
sportReds baulk at Benteke £32.5m release clause
News
The controversial Motor Neurone Disease Association poster, featuring sufferer Michael Smith, has drawn a series of angry complaints
newsThis one has been criticised for its 'threatening tone'
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Account Executive - Graduate / Entry Level

£22000 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This digital advertising infras...

Recruitment Genius: European Sales Director - Aerospace Cable & Wire

£100000 - £125000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a top tier supplier to the...

Recruitment Genius: Digital Project Manager

£17100 - £22900 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the North West's leading...

Recruitment Genius: IT Support Technician

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an intermediate help de...

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral