Caster Semenya has landed Team South Africa’s 10th medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games with victory in the women’s 800 metres. Semenya was the hot favourite going into the event at the Joao Havelange Olympic Stadium and she duly delivered on Saturday night. This is also South Africa’s second gold medal of the Games to go with Wayde Van Niekerk’s 400 metre world record effort earlier in the week.
The Limpopo lady got her tactics spot on this time, unlike in London four years ago and duly showed some serious gas over the final 200 metres to race to victory. Her winning time of 1:55.28 seconds was not good enough to set the world record and so Czechoslovakia’s Jarmila Kratochvilova’s 1:53.28, set in 1983, still stands. Nevertheless, this time is a new personal best for Semenya and a national record to boot.
Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba was second (1:56.49) with Kenya’s Margaret Wambui taking bronze in 1:57.52.
Photo credits: Christiaan Kotze/SASPA