Semenya unfazed despite losing IAAF testosterone appeal at CAS

The IAAF believe the regulations are necessary to “preserve fair competition in the female category”, and have received a large amount of support from current and former athletes.

South Africa’s Olympic 800-metres champion Caster Semenya has had an appeal dismissed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to halt the introduction of regulations to limit testosterone in female athletes with differences in sexual development (DSDs).

CAS ruled on Wednesday that the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) regulations are needed to ensure fair competition between athletes who compete in events ranging from 400-metres to a mile, previously calling the hearing one of the most important ever to appear before the court.

It means that Semenya and other affected athletes hoping to compete at the World Championships in Doha in September would have to start taking medication to lower their testosterone level to below the required five (5) nmol/L within one week.

It is a special concession made by the IAAF due to the length of time it has taken CAS to reach a verdict. However, in future athletes will be required to have reduced their blood testosterone level to below the stipulated concentration for a period of six months before they can compete.

In response to the decision, Semenya posted a tweet that read: “Sometimes it’s better to react with no reaction.”

According to a media release here on Wednesday, “The Panel found that the DSD Regulations are discriminatory, but the majority of the Panel found that, on the basis of the evidence submitted by the parties, such discrimination is a necessary, reasonable and proportionate means of achieving the IAAF’s aim of preserving the integrity of female athletics in the Restricted Events.

“By majority, the CAS Panel has dismissed the requests for arbitration considering that the Claimants were unable to establish that the DSD Regulations were “invalid”.”

However, in a 165-page award, the CAS Panel expressed some serious concerns as to the future practical application of these DSD Regulations.

The case is likely have wide-reaching consequences, not just for the future of athletics, but all women’s sport, and has split opinion around the globe.

The IAAF believe the regulations are necessary to “preserve fair competition in the female category”, and have received a large amount of support from current and former athletes.

But the governing body has also come in for criticism from human rights organisations over their wish to medically alter naturally produced levels of testosterone, with the United Nations Human Rights Council adopting a resolution in support of Semenya in March.

The South African will be the most high-profile athlete to be affected, but others include 2018 Olympic silver medallist in the 800-metres, Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi.

Semenya took potential steps to reinvent her career last week when she won the 5,000-metres at the South African Athletics Championships in a modest time of 16:05.97, an event that would allow her to compete outside of the IAAF regulations.

Other sporting bodies are believed to have kept a close eye on the CAS case and with the precedent in place, may now set their own parameters for participation by DSD and transgender athletes in their individual codes.


Senegal President rewards players and staff with 34,000 US$ each

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Senegal president HE Macky Sall has expressed his contentment and gratitude for the Lions of Teranga and their technical staff by splashing 34,000 US$ on each of them. In fact, the Lions of Teranga were close to lifting the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations trophy, but they were beaten 0-1 by Morocco in the tournament grand final last Friday. The 2019 Africa Cup of Nations final was the second one in the history of Senegal(the first one was back in 2002)  and the Lions wished they could clinch the title this year for the first time ever. Senegal’s campaign at the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt was impressive after winning five of their overall seven games against Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Benin and Tunisia. The Lions of Teranga went home with the silver medal of the tournament as runners-up as well as the Fair Play Award. After arriving home, Senegal’s team were received at the State House in Dakar on Saturday where the president Sall has declared that an amount of 34,000 US$ is to be awarded to each team player and staff member. This amount of money splashed is different from the 17,000 US$ each player had already received after reaching the final.

2019 Ghana Football Awards: Full list of winners

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The 2019 edition of the Ghana Football Awards was held on Monday evening at the Marriot Hotel in Accra. The event witnessed the presence of several Ghanaian football stars as well as journalists and dignitaries. Thomas Partey, Atletico Madrid star, won the football of the year award in addition to the best foreign player award following his impressive season with Atlético in the Spanish La Liga where they finished second behind FC Barcelona.In fact, Partey has also been crowned the footballer of the year in last year’s ceremony. The female best footballer of the year and the rising star were awarded to Black Maidens’s player Abdulai Mukarama. Below is the complete list of awards winners (the Ghana Football Awards 2019) Coach of the Year Charles Akunnor- Asante Kotoko Women’s Footballer of the Year Mukarama Abdulai – Black Maidens Team of The Year Asante Kotoko Goalkeeper of the Year Felix Annan – Asante Kotoko Home-based Player of the Year Fatawu Shafiu Best Foreign Player Thomas Partey Goal of the Year By Joseph Esso – Heart of Oak The Living Legend Awards Dogo Moro and Wiberforce Mfum Rising Star Award Abdulai Mukarama Thumbs Up Award Professional Footballers Association of Ghana Overall Footballer of the Year Thomas Partey

Herve Renard officially resigns as Morocco head coach

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Morocco head coach Herve Renard has announced his departure from the team following the Lions of Atlas ‘underwhelming run at 2019 the Africa Cup of Nations. In fact, Morocco were among favourites to lift the trophy this year in Egypt, way before the AFCON started; however, they were eliminated at the hands of Benin in the tournament round of 16 with a 4-1 penalty shoot-out following a 1-1 draw. The loss to Benin, who are considered as the tournament debutants, was a shock to Morocco fans. Consequently, the players, staff and coach Renard were highly criticized by Moroccans. Boss Renard had been in charge of Morocco national team since 2016.Prior to that, he had won the AFCON with Ivory Coast in 2015 and with Zambia in 2012. In a statement on social media the coach said "Morocco will always remain for me a country with which I lived incredible emotions, "I am proud of what we have achieved and how far we have managed to come. It is time for me to close this long and beautiful chapter of my life, not without emotion and sadness, but it is an inevitable decision taken well before AFCON 2019, "It is time for me to close this long and beautiful chapter of my life." He added:"We had all hoped [for] better for the Afcon 2019 in Egypt. But this is football - it gives birth to the wildest hopes (after three wins in the first round [for the] first time in Afcon final tournament for Morocco), and brings us hard to the reality of a too-quick elimination on penalties!"

Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns unveil their new kits

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South Africa giants Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns have revealed their new home and away kits ahead of the new 2019/2020 season. Orlando Pirates’s new kits were revealed on Monday morning in partnership with Adidas. The Pirates home kit jersey is an all-white one with black stripes, while the shorts are black. The Buccaneers away jersey is red with black patterns. A statement by the club reads: "The last time Orlando Pirates wore a white home jersey with black stripes, they brought the country to its feet by being twice crowned kings of Africa in a purple patch of continental dominance following an improbable Champions’ League campaign triumph in 1995 followed by a Super Cup win in 1996." On the other hand, Mamelodi Sundowns’s new kits are sponsored by Puma and rich with patterns that are inspired by the blazing African Sun. The home jersey is a white one with grey patterns on it and so are the shorts.Downs's away jersey is yellow with elegant design on it to go with the new blue shorts. Puma Marketing Director in South Africa Brett Bellinger said: “PUMA’s long-term relationship with Mamelodi Sundowns continues to thrive both on and off the pitch, and we believe the vibrant new Home and Away kit will resonate with fans – both for the replica kit and fan wear.”

Morocco's head coach quits after team fail in AFCON

Hervé Renard is done with Morocco. The French coach of the Moroccan national football team announced his resignation on Sunday.

Hervé Renard is done with Morocco. The French coach of the Moroccan national football team announced his resignation on Sunday.

The announcement comes after the Atlas Lions were eliminated in the 16th round of the African Cup of Nations finals that has just concluded in Egypt. Hervé Renard’s squad lost to the Benin after a shock penalty.

The Frenchman has given up after 41 months at the helm of the Cherifian kingdom’s national team. He posted on social media, “It is time for me to close this long and beautiful chapter of my life, not without a certain emotion and sadness, but it is an unavoidable decision taken well before the CAN-2019.”

According to the now former Atlas Lion Coach, the President of the Royal Moroccan Federation has made a contractual commitment to respect his decision.