World and Olympic champion Caster Semenya ran a race of brutal simplicity to win the women’s 800m the Meeting de Paris IAAF Diamond League stop and record her fastest-ever time of 1:54.25, putting her fourth on the all-time world list – after leading from gun to tape at the Charlety Stadium in France, on Saturday, 30 June 2018.
It was an uncharacteristically bold effort from the South African. In a race without pacemakers, Semenya did her own work to go through the bell in 56.12
Not finished, she pushed on with only the Rio 2016 silver medallist Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi able to stay in touch, and as the two reached the final straight, Semenya was five metres clear and moving away.
Niyonsaba finished in a season’s best of 1:55.86, with Ajee Wilson of the United States third in 1:57.11.
“In Oslo, we were not very happy about the pace, so I said ‘No pace this time,’” Semenya explained. “See what you can get out of it. But 1:54.25… I did not expect that. I was thinking 1:54.99 could be possible, but this was great!”
Semenya’s breathtaking performance at the Charlety Stadium in France sees her with a 4-point lead with 24 points in three meets on the Diamond League’s women’s 800m ranking for 2018.
The next stop on the Diamond League is the Athletissima at the Pointaise stadium in Lausanne, Switzerland, 4-5 July.
Photo 1 caption: Unhappy with the pace in Oslo, Caster Semenya laid down a career-best 1:54.25, leading the women’s 800m from gun to tape in Paris on Saturday evening. Photo: Screengrab of IAAF Video
Photo 1 caption: The performance saw Semenya capture the world-lead for the year, in an all-time fourth place on the world list. Photo: Screengrab of IAAF Video
Photo 1 caption: Semenya’s breathtaking performance at the Charlety Stadium in France sees her with a 4-point lead with 24 points in three meets on the Diamond League’s women’s 800m ranking for 2018. The IAAF’s Photo: Screengrab of IAAF Video
This piece was first published by the IAAF
With editing by gsport