IAAF: Semenya has to wait for London gold

Semenya grabbed silver in the English capital but that looks set to be upgraded to gold following Savinova-Farnosova’s disqualification.

SA athlete Caster Semenya. Picture: Gallo Images/AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Caster Semenya could become the first South African to capture gold medals at consecutive Olympic Games, after the Court of Arbitration for Sport banned Russian middle-distance runner Mariya Savinova-Farnosova for four years for doping.

The Russian was deemed to have doped between 26 July 2010 to 19 August 2013 and consequently all her results achieved during that period were disqualified, including the women’s 800m race at London 2012, which she won.

Semenya grabbed silver in the English capital but that looks set to be upgraded to gold following Savinova-Farnosova’s disqualification.

However, IAAF spokesperson Yannis Nikolaou said that the South African will have to wait at least 45 days before that happens: "Savinova-Farnosova has the right to appeal, so it cannot be final until the 45-day appeal period is over. If there is no appeal after 45 days, Semenya will be awarded gold. However, Savinova-Farnosova probably will appeal."

Savinova-Farnosova was also stripped of her 2011 World Championship gold‚ another race where Semenya ended second.