Semenya plans to make 1,500m bid in 2012 Olympics

Pretoria: World 800 metre champion Caster Semenya has said she is planning to participate in the 1,500 metres race at next year’s London Olympics.

“It is part of my preparation for my first Olympics. I’m looking forward to it and the plan is to include the 1,500 metres at the Olympics,” Semenya said.

The 20-year-old runner began her season over the weekend by winning the 800 metre race in Potchefstroom, South Africa.

Semenya ran for a total of 2minuites 04.12 seconds to finish ahead of national champion Mapaseka Makhanya.

In 2009, Semenya, a middle-distance runner, won gold in the women’s 800-metre World Championships with a time of 1:55: 45.

However, following her victory, questions were raised about her physical condition. Suggestions were in the air that she had an unfair advantage over other female racers.

In protest, the South African Olympic Committee withdrew Semenya from all competitions until July 6, 2010, when the International Atheletics Federation (IAAF) cleared her return to competitions.

Bureau Report