Semenya marks return to racing with a bang

SOUTH Africa's golden girl of athletics, Caster Semenya, marked her return to competition with an easy win in the 800m event in Finland last night.

SOUTH Africa's golden girl of athletics, Caster Semenya, marked her return to competition with an easy win in the 800m event in Finland last night.

Running in lane four at this low-level meeting, Semenya was sluggish in the beginning of her specialist event but increased the pace over the last 200m. Semenya clocked 2:04,22.

It was her first race since making history by becoming the first black South African woman to win a gold medal in a global competition.

This was after she won the 800m title at the International Association of Athletics Federations World Championship in Berlin, Germany, last August.

Semenya was given the green light by the world governing athletics body to run against women last week.

After the Berlin race the IAAF temporarily suspended Semenya.

Various structures, including the ANC Youth League, are now calling for the lifting of the Chuene-led board's suspension, saying they were vindicated by the IAAF.

Widely speculated to have undergone medical treatment last year, Semenya will skip the African Senior Championships in Kenya, starting on July 28.

Speaking through her coach, Michael "Sponge" Seme, Semenya said she has decided not to go to Kenya to improve her fitness level.

"We are looking at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India, in October, which will also form part of the preparations for the 2012 London Olympics."

Semenya was also lured by Athletics Germany to compete in a meeting at the Olympics Stadium, where she won the World Championships.

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