Sports and Recreation Department Director-General Alec Moemi has lauded the universities, professors and sports scientists from South Africa who will testify in support of Caster Semenya in Switzerland at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Semenya is looking to overturn the IAAF’s proposed new regulations on female athletes with naturally high testosterone.
Moemi says that South African universities are well equipped to speak in favour of Semenya in her ongoing battle against the IAAF’s controversial regulations related to testosterone levels.
Athletics South Africa have formed a formidable list of local sports scientist and professors. Among them is Professor Joel Dave, the Head of Endocrinology at Groote Schuur Hospital and the University of Cape Town. World-renowned sports scientist Professor Ross Tucker is also on deck to give his point of view on the sensitive matter.
Moemi says these South African universities and experts are at the forefront of sports studies.
“We as a proud government know that some of our universities – from a sports science and sports management point of view – are leading universities globally and in the rankings of universities. We had placed a greater reliance from Athletic South Africa’s side of things on local experts and we have placed a greater reliance on experts that have worked with Caster, who understand her training techniques.”
Also, on the list is Madeleine Pape, who represented Australia in the 800m at international level between 2006 until 2010. Pape is currently a Ph.D candidate at the University of Wisconsin, in the US.
Semenya’s experienced legal team of James Bunting and Carlos Sayao have also put together a strong list of international expert witnesses to testify in her favour, mainly from North America and the UK.
Moemi explains why foreign experts are key in a case that has global implications.
“We have done extensive literature review and we have beefed up (our case) with other international experts from other jurisdictions, just to ensure that we are able to balance out and not just for it to be seen and presented as purely a South African case, but that it is a global case that has global significance. We are confident in the calibre of the experts we have and the testimony that they are giving.”
The scheduled hearings will end on Friday, with a verdict expected before the end of March.
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