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South African athlete, Caster Semenya, said she offered to strip naked before World Athletics officials to prove she is female

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South African double Olympic 800m champion, Caster Semenya, has revealed that she once offered to strip naked and show her vagina to officials of the World Athletics Federation when she was 18 years of age to prove she was female.

The 31-year-old South African middle-distance champion said in an interview on Wednesday that when she first burst into the scene in 2009 by after winning the women’s 800m world title in a stunning fashion, the world athletics governing body doubted her gender and insisted she should undergo gender verification tests.

“They thought I had a d***, probably… but I told them: ‘It’s fine. I’m a female, I don’t care. If you want to see I’m a woman, I will show you my vagina. All right?’” Semenya recalled shortly after winning the women’s 800m world title at the 2009 World Athletics Championships in Berlin, Germany.

Semenya has a condition known as hyperandrogenism, which is characterised by higher than the usual levels of testosterone, a hormone that increases muscle mass and strength and the body’s ability to use oxygen.

Gender tests conducted on the athlete have shown that Semenya has no womb or ovaries but that she had internal testes, the male sexual organs which produce testosterone, and her levels of the hormone were three times that of a “normal” female.

In 2011, she was forced to take medication after a ruling by World Athletics, followed by an injunction by the International Association of Athletics Federations that all female athletes with hyperandrogenism had to medically lower their testosterone levels.

“It made me sick, made me gain weight, panic attacks, I don’t know if I was ever going to have a heart attack.

“It’s like stabbing yourself with a knife every day. But I had no choice.

“I’m 18, I wanted to run, I wanted to make it to Olympics, that was the only option for me,” Semenya said in the interview.

In 2020, Semenya lost her appeal to the Swiss Federal Tribunal to set aside a 2019 Court of Arbitration Sport (CAS) ruling that female athletes with high natural testosterone levels must take medication to reduce it.

She had approached the tribunal after CAS, sport’s highest court, ruled that the regulations of World Athletics were necessary for athletes with DSDs in races ranging from 400 metres to a mile to ensure fair competition.

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CAF postpones 2023 Afcon to January 2024 due to weather concerns

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The Confederation of African Football (CAF), has postponed the 34th edition of the African Nations Cup (AFCON), which was scheduled to hold between June to July of 2023 in Ivory Coast, to January and February, 2024.

The reason for the postponement, according to CAF President, Patrice Motsepe, is due to concerns over weather conditions in the West African country which experiences heavy rainfall during the period.

While addressing the CAF Executive Committee meeting in Rabat, Morocco, on Sunday, Motsepe said the decision was also to align the continent with the European football calendars.

Motsepe also said the decision was further motivated by weather concerns following a report by the Ivorian Meteorological Agency which predicted heavy rainfall in many parts of the country designated for the tournament.

The agency, in a report presented to CAF, had noted that Ivory Coast which has a tropical climate, has the peak of its rain season between June and July and most parts of the country is always at the height of the rainy season.

This is the second time the AFCON will be rescheduled at the beginning of the year since it was moved from January/February to June/July by former CAF President Ahmad Ahmad.

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Nigerian ‘Last Stylebender’, Israel Adesanya, beats Jarred Cannonier to retain UFC middleweight title

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Nigerian fighter, Israel Adesanya, “the Last Stylebender” , has retained his UFC middleweight title with a win via unanimous decision.

Judges scored the bout 49-46, 49-46, 50-45, all in favour of the Nigeria’s over his challenger, Jarred Cannonier in the UFC 276 bout which took place at the T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada this morning.

The 32-year-old Nigerian has now defended his middleweight championship for the fourth time after he defeated Kelvin for his middleweight interim title in 2019.

The ‘Last Stylebender’ he has defeated the likes of Robert Whitaker, Martin Vettori, Paulo Costa, Yoel Romero including his win against Jarod Cannonier.

Adesanya is one of top fighters of African descent in the UCF, the list includes Abu Azaitar was given the nickname Gladiator who holds a 14-1 MMA record, Sodiq Yusuff and Kamaru Usman who are both Nigeria and Cameroonian, Francis Ngannou, nickname: Predator.

Adesanya is reportedly set to a guaranteed purse of $1.8million from the fight after he earned around $1.1million in his last bout against Martin Vettori. UFC will earn approximately $82.5million from PPV sales and Israel will receive 30% of the PPV shares which could make this the highest earnings of his career.

 

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