Olympic runner Caster Semenya loses fight over testosterone rules

first_imgThe IAAF argued that high, naturally occurring levels of testosterone in athletes like Semenya with “intersex” characteristics that don’t conform to standard definitions of male and female give them an unfair competitive advantage, and it decreed a maximum level for females.The court decision could open the way for similar rules in other women’s sports where size, speed and power make a difference, such as weightlifting, boxing, swimming, rugby, field hockey and soccer.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsSemenya — a 28-year-old South African whose sculpted biceps and super-fast, blow-away-the-competition times have led others to question her accomplishments — declared she will not be deterred.“I know that the IAAF’s regulations have always targeted me specifically,” Semenya said in a statement. “For a decade the IAAF has tried to slow me down, but this has actually made me stronger. The decision of the CAS will not hold me back. I will once again rise above and continue to inspire young women and athletes in South Africa and around the world.” MOST READ The two-time Olympic champion in the 800 meters will have to lower her testosterone levels by such means as birth control pills or prostate cancer drugs if she wants to defend her world title in September in Doha, Qatar. Semenya is expected to race in the 800 on Friday at a track meet in Doha in what will be the last world-class event before the new rules apply.Testosterone strengthens muscle tone and bone mass. Because of that, it is against the rules for athletes to use testosterone supplements. Some women have what is known as hyperandrogenism, meaning they have natural levels that are unusually high.The IAAF rules require women to reduce their levels below 5 nanomoles per liter of blood. According to the IAAF, most females, including elite athletes, have levels of testosterone circulating naturally in their bodies of 0.12 to 1.79 nanomoles per liter, while men have levels that can be dozens or even hundreds of times higher — typically 7.7 to 29.4.Semenya’s level is considered private medical information and has not been disclosed.The South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee decried the ruling, saying, “We maintain that the rules are ill-thought and will be a source of distress for the targeted female athletes.”ADVERTISEMENT Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games PLAY LIST 03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew View comments LATEST STORIES Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue FILE – In this Friday, Aug. 11, 2017 file photo Britain’s Lynsey Sharp, United States’ Charlene Lipsey, South Africa’s Caster Semenya and Switzerland’s Selina Buechel race for the line in a Women’s 800m semifinal during the World Athletics Championships in London. Caster Semenya will find out Wednesday, May 1, 2019 if she has won her appeal against IAAF rules to curb female runners’ high natural levels of testosterone. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)GENEVA — The sports world’s highest court ruled Wednesday that Olympic gold medalist Caster Semenya and other female runners like her with unusually high testosterone must take medication to reduce their levels of the male sex hormone if they want to compete in certain events — a landmark decision with far-reaching ramifications for other women’s sports.In a 2-1 ruling, the Court of Arbitration for Sport upheld proposed rules issued by track’s governing body, the IAAF, saying that they are discriminatory but that “such discrimination is a necessary, reasonable and proportionate means” of “preserving the integrity of female athletics.”ADVERTISEMENT Semenya was legally recognized at birth as female, but her speed and muscular body have led others to cast doubt on the integrity of her track achievements throughout her career. As a teenager in 2009, she won her first world title in Berlin. Hours before the race, the IAAF asked her to undergo a gender verification test.She is not the only female athlete with high natural levels of testosterone but has become an unwilling face of the issue. Indian sprinter Dutee Chand has been publicly identified as having high testosterone. Two weeks ago, Olympic silver medalist and Semenya rival Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi confirmed she has hyperandrogenism too.Referring to the rule, Niyonsaba said: “For me, it’s about discrimination. It doesn’t make sense. I didn’t choose to be born like this. What am I? I’m created by God.”At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Semenya and Chand competed, and other athletes implied that other runners, including medalists in the 800 meters, also had elevated levels.“I think that we need separate events for them and for us,” Nataliia Lupu of Ukraine said after running against Semenya. “You can see that it’s easy for them.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Maria Sharapova withdraws from Italian Open with lingering shoulder injury “This decision marks a massive turning point as it now redefines what a female athlete in particular is,” said Natalie du Toit, head of the organization’s athletes commission, adding: “Knowing Caster and the hard work she has put into her sport, we support all her endeavors, and we are all behind her.”The IAAF went into the case arguing that female runners with high testosterone have an unfair advantage in events from 400 meters to the mile. However, the court suggested that the IAAF apply the rules only up to the 800 because the evidence was not clear that women with hyperandrogenism have an edge in the 1,500 meters and above.Under the rule, female athletes whose medical profiles previously showed high testosterone will be subject to blood tests to prove they have complied.An appeal to Switzerland’s Supreme Court is possible. But judges rarely overturn decisions of the world sports court.Ross Tucker, a sports science consultant who testified on Semenya’s behalf and boasts of a Ph.D. in exercise physiology, said the scientific evidence is insufficient to justify the rules. He said that as a result of the court decision, other sports will essentially copy the IAAF’s regulations.“For them, every fear and concern they had that they will be in the spotlight for introducing similar rules will be gone,” he said. “Other sports will be super happy because the pressure’s off to develop their own regulations.”He said the ruling moves the world of sports closer to developing its own definition of gender, based on hormone levels.“‘Sporting sex’ has been introduced,” he said. “That is where the decision does have far-reaching effects.”John Brewer, a professor of applied sports science at the Buckinghamshire New University in Britain who supports the IAAF rule, said such regulations could end up being adopted not just by individual sports but by team sports such as rugby, soccer and field hockey.Hormone-blocking drugs can increase the risk of blood clots, thinning bones, fractures and heart problems.last_img read more

David Smith freed from GT Prison next faces US Feds

first_img Related Items:David smith, free, grand turk prison, olint, ponzi scheme Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Missick & Co Defendants and David Smith all in Court this Week David Smith returns to court in January; heads back to HMP in Grand Turk Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 22 Jan 2015 – No comment for the media; David Smith who had been serving a six and a half year sentence on four counts of financial crimes namely: two counts of money laundering and two counts of conspiracy to defraud whisked his wife through the Provo International Airport terminal today bound for a private vehicle waiting to take them away from the spotlight. Smith has been incarcerated at the Her Majesty’s Prison in Grand Turk since 2010 and is due to complete a Federal sentence in the United States for similar crimes linked to a $220 million Ponzi scheme exposed in 2008; an Orlando court gave him 30 years. Smith was obviously thinner than when we last saw him; still with his signature beard and fresh off a flight out of the capital Grand Turk where he was released. Magnetic Media was told that he is finished his time for the Turks and Caicos; and what is next for the man who once headed Olint, a company founded in Jamaica is unclear. In 2013, the US Department of Justice advised individuals who had invested with Smith that they could make claims for compensation. The report in the Jamaica Observer explains that a part of Smith’s criminal sentence was to forfeit assets seized by federal authorities. In 2011, David Smith was convicted in the US District Court for the Middle District of Florida on multiple counts of wire fraud and money laundering. Robert Di Pano, a NY, NJ and Florida attorney who writes frequently on financial crimes cases put the gravity of what David Smith, who is a TCI Belonger into perspective, saying and I quote: “Regardless of the outcome (in the Turks and Caicos), the severity of Smith’s US sentence looms large in the background.” David Smith back in court; continues to fight US Extraditionlast_img read more

18 Underpopulated Primary Schools To Be Closed

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppKINGSTON, July 21 (JIS): Approximately 18 primary schools with small populations ranging from a low of 16 to a maximum of 68 students will be closed effective September 2015.Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, made the announcement during today’s (July 21) sitting of the House of Representatives.He explained that the closures are intended to achieve greater levels of efficiencies in the school system. The Ministry is projecting savings of $23 million in operational costs from the school closures.Minister Thwaites noted that the 18 schools are among the more than 200 public institutions offering primary level education, which are all underutilised, with an enrolment of 100 students or less. “In most cases, enrolment has declined steadily during the five-year period 2010-2014. In some communities, where the schools are located, the population has been declining, with a small number of youth and many older persons as residents,” Rev. Thwaites said.He added that this has negatively impacted the operational cost for these institutions, noting that while the average per capita expenditure at primary schools amounts to $88,000, in many of these small schools, it is costing up to twice as much to operate them.“Nearly all of the 18 schools targeted for imminent closure have performed below or at about the national average of 77.2 per cent in the 2014 Grade Four Literacy Test. This academic performance is despite the fact that the teacher pupil ratio is less than one to 20 in most of the schools; the ratio is as low as one to seven in several institutions,” Rev. Thwaites noted further.He told the House that the process of closing these schools involved extensive public consultations with stakeholders including parents, the Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA), churches, community leaders and political representatives. “The team from the Ministry of Education has been very responsive to concerns raised. However, in the final analysis, we have to make a decision in the interest of student achievement and the efficient use of financial resources,” he said. Meanwhile, the Education Minister assured parents that where the relocation of students has resulted in transportation needs, transport operators will be contracted to take children to and from school.He added that the estimated total cost for transportation is $106,000 daily, with an estimated annual cost of $20 million.Also, permanent staff at the schools to be closed will be facilitated for employment through the relevant authorities and unions.“Through the necessary consultations and agreement with affected parties, teachers will either be relocated under the voluntary relocation exercise, retired or to be asked to opt for early retirement,” Rev. Thwaites said.He noted that the students from the affected schools have been transferred to others, where they can “access richer and more diverse learning experience.”“We encourage parents and school personnel to assist the students as they grow through a period of change. We are confident this can be a positive move for the children in attaining their education,” the Education Minister said.The schools, which will be closed in September are: Bowden Hill Primary, Tower Hill Primary, Clifton Primary and Mount St. James All-Age in St. Andrew; Black Hill All-Age and Belvedere Primary School in Portland; Pear Tree River Primary in St. Thomas; Preston Hill Primary and Rose Bank Primary in St. Mary; Brittonvale Primary, Clydesdale Primary, Jefferyville Primary and Watsonville Primary in St. Ann; Alps Primary and Infant school in Trelawny; Hillsbrook Primary in Hanover; Auchtembeddie Primary and Junior High in Manchester; Hopeton Primary in St. Elizabeth; and Hartlands Primary in St. Catherine. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Related Items:closed, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, Minister of Education, primary schools Recommended for you Banks closed, storm updates CLOSED: Revenue and Treasury Offices overrun with mold Education Ministry To Spend $775 Million To Purchase Textbookslast_img read more

Google to ask Android users to choose preferred browser

first_img Comments Google Samsung Alphabet Inc. Tags Phones Tech Industry Google will soon prompt Android users to choose their preferred browser. Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images Google will prompt Android users to choose their preferred web browser and search apps, a senior Google executive said Tuesday, as it tries to avoid new EU antitrust sanctions.The European Commission slapped Google with a record fine of 4.34 billion euros ($5 billion) in July over antitrust violations related to the Android mobile operating system. Google’s agreements with phone makers such as Huawei, Samsung and LG put those companies at a disadvantage because they’re completely dependent on Android, the EU said.Android users have always had the ability to install any browser they wanted, but now Google will highlight that they have other browser and search engine options.Google will do more to “ensure that Android phone owners know about the wide choice of browsers and search engines available to download to their phones,” Kent Walker, senior vice president of Google, wrote in a blog post. “This will involve asking users of existing and new Android devices in Europe which browser and search apps they would like to use.”In response to the $5 billion fine, Google said in October it would begin offering a paid license for phone and tablet manufacturers in Europe that want to include its Google Play app store, Maps, Gmail and Google-owned YouTube. Another license will let phone makers include Google’s search engine and Chrome browser.The EU’s investigation into Android dominance dates back to 2016. In June 2017, it fined Google $2.7 billion over abusing the way it prioritizes its own shopping results in search. Share your voice 4last_img read more

McLarens latest 720S is electric… and also a rideon toy for children

first_img Tags 0 In addition to a functional brake pedal and brake light, there’s also a freakin’ infotainment system, which has USB and SD card inputs for playing music or even watching a video. The car comes with popular kid’s songs built into the system, and the screen can also display pertinent information like the toy’s range (probably not much). There’s also a remote control so parents can give their children an “autonomous” experience, in case their driving skills aren’t yet trusted.While it’s definitely affordable by McLaren’s usual standards, it’s still on the expensive side for new parents, with a starting price of £315 (about $400). But then again, how many other ride-on toys come with engine sounds and an infotainment system? McLaren 720S: Too much supercar for the road? Car Culture Toys and Tabletop Games Enlarge ImageI wonder what the weight rating is. Asking for a friend, of course. McLaren In 2016, McLaren introduced its first all-electric car, a ride-on children’s toy modeled after its P1 hypercar. Now, there’s a second car in its lineup, and while the general idea is the same, there’s even more tricks hidden away in its latest offering.McLaren on Thursday unveiled the 720S Ride-On. Similar to the powered-wheel toys you see at the store that I will not name specifically out of trademark concerns, this new “car” aims to recreate the McLaren experience even more faithfully than the P1 Ride-On before it… within reason, of course.The 720S Ride-On can be purchased in one of eight different McLaren paint colors, including a launch edition with the automaker’s always-cool Papaya Spark hue. Like the 720S, it has dihedral doors that open and close, and the whole exterior looks pretty close to the real thing. The electric motor requires a key to start, and the toy pipes in proper engine noises to make it feel more like the real thing. 11 Photos 8:39 Now playing: Watch this: More about 2018 McLaren 720S Preview • 2018 McLaren 720S: Too much and just enough all at once 2020 McLaren 720S Spider review: Treat yo self Review • 2018 McLaren 720S: Raw power meets refined performance Share your voice McLaren Post a comment More From Roadshow 2019 Acura NSX review: Hitting its stride McLaren 720S Ride-On has its own infotainment system 2019 McLaren 600LT: Balanced and bonkers McLarenlast_img read more

Game of Thrones season 8 ending preview leaks online furious fans say

first_imgGame of ThronesGame of Thrones Official YoutubeThe final season of Game of Thrones has not lived up to expectations, be it the story, character arcs or the technical details of the show, like the lighting in episode 3 or the coffee cup min episode 4. Fans are dissatisfied by season 8. And to make things worse, reportedly a minute-long preview for the last two episodes of Game Of Thrones’ eighth season was allegedly leaked on Monday, leaving fans livid over the show’s potential ending.According to The Sun, the footage is believed to show major spoilers for the battle of King’s Landing, as well as how the show will end in episode six. Viewers, who had seen the potential spoilers on Twitter, were furious at the prospect of what the leak could mean, with some even going as far as to say that it meant the show had ‘the worst ending in TV history.’ That seems like quite a claim but the way the final season has been progressing, we have to say that we are a little apprehensive about what the last two episodes hold for fans. Game of Thrones season 8 episode 4Game of Thrones (@gameofthrones/Instagram)Spoilers for Episode 4 ahead.The last episode was disappointing as well, with character development and story arcs abandoned at the drop of a hat. Jaime Lannister abandons Brienne of Tarth after making love to her, Brienne of Tarth, a strong, independent warrior Knight is reduced to a sniveling stereotype of a lovestruck woman. And a Dragon is shot down from in the air in an apparent impossible shot. Why? So that the final battle is an even match between Daenerys Targaryen and Cersei Lannister.The fifth episode of the final season of Game of Thrones will air on May 12.last_img read more

Ramaphosa elected South Africa president

first_imgActing president of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa arrives at the parliament, in Cape Town, South Africa, 15 February, 2018. Photo: ReutersSouth African lawmakers on Thursday selected Cyril Ramaphosa as the country’s new president after scandal-tainted Jacob Zuma resigned under pressure from his own ANC ruling party.Ramaphosa was chosen without a vote after being the only candidate nominated, chief justice Mogoeng Mogoeng told assembled lawmakers at a special sitting of the parliament in Cape Town.The announcement brought loud cheers from ANC lawmakers, with Ramaphosa due to address the parliament later during proceedings.Zuma resigned on Wednesday as the ANC finally turned against him after a nine-year reign dominated by corruption scandals, economic slowdown and plummeting electoral popularity.Zuma railed against the ANC for “recalling” him from office and — when he at first refused to resign — then threatening to oust him via a parliament no-confidence vote.In an earlier TV interview on Wednesday, Zuma said he had received “very unfair” treatment from the party that he joined in 1959 and in which he had fought for decades against apartheid white-minority rule.Zuma had been in a power struggle with Ramaphosa, his deputy president.Zuma’s hold over the ANC was broken in December when his chosen successor — his former wife Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma — narrowly lost to Ramaphosa in a vote to become the new party leader.last_img read more

May fends off opponents of draft Brexit deal

first_imgA video grab from footage broadcast by the UK Parliament`s Parliamentary Recording Unit (PRU) shows Britain`s prime minister Theresa May giving a statement to the House of Commons in London on 22 November on the draft declaration, laying out plans for future relations with the European Union. Photo: AFPBritish prime minister Theresa May on Thursday fended off heavy opposition in parliament after Britain and the EU agreed on the outlines of post-Brexit ties as part of a draft deal due to be signed off by EU leaders.After briefing her cabinet in a hastily-arranged teleconference call, May addressed the House of Commons, saying the agreement was the “best possible deal”.EU Council President Donald Tusk said the 26-page declaration covering trade, security, the environment and other issues was agreed “in principle” and would be sent to the other 27 member states for approval.The pound leapt by about one percent against the dollar and also firmed against the euro on the news, which allayed fears Britain could leave the European Union next March with no new arrangements in place.But the deal does not address the thorny issues of fishing rights and Gibraltar, which have raised concerns in EU capitals.After the draft declaration was agreed on Thursday, Spanish prime minister Pedro Sanchez repeated a threat to sink the deal if Madrid’s concerns on Gibraltar were not met.And the deal could still yet be rejected by the British parliament.British MPs of all parties criticised the divorce agreement announced last week, which includes a financial settlement and a controversial plan to avoid a hard Irish border.May hopes the promise of future cooperation will act as a sweetener to persuade her own Conservative MPs and any wavering opposition lawmakers to back her.Leap in the darkBut her critics were quick to point out that the political declaration was not legally binding, unlike the terms of the divorce.Former foreign minister Boris Johnson, who is seen as a potential leadership rival, said the draft deal “makes a complete nonsense of Brexit”.Other leading pro-Brexit Conservative MPs, as well as her Northern Irish allies the DUP, urged May to renegotiate the divorce agreement to remove a contentious legal guarantee to ensure an open Irish border.Opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn confirmed his party would not back it, saying: “This is the blindfold Brexit we all feared, a leap in the dark.”The deal was struck after through-the-night talks between British and EU negotiators, which followed a last-minute visit to Brussels by May for a meeting with European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker.She will return on Saturday, on the eve of a special summit where all 28 EU leaders are expected to sign off on the overall Brexit package.Critical momentFirst, the texts must be cleared by a meeting of top EU diplomats — the summit’s so-called “sherpas” — on Friday.”The negotiations are now at a critical moment, and all our efforts must be focused on working with our European partners to bring this process to a final conclusion,” May said.The political declaration, seen by AFP, says future ties will be wide-ranging, covering economic cooperation, law enforcement and criminal justice, foreign policy, security and defence.It includes references to Britain developing “an independent trade policy” and declares an end to free movement of citizens between Britain and the EU — two key demands of the Brexit campaign in the 2016 referendum.In the Commons, May also highlighted the possibility that the Irish border issue can be resolved through the use of technology, rather than through the controversial “backstop” customs arrangement included in the divorce deal.This is intended to avoid new border checks between British Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, an EU member, after a transition period ends in December 2020.It says that unless alternative arrangements are made, Britain will stay in a customs union with the EU and Northern Ireland will continue to follow the bloc’s single market rules.Conservatives fear this would mean following the EU’s rules indefinitely, while Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which props up May’s government, also opposes it.They have already warned they could reject the deal if it leads to the province being separated from the rest of the UK.The EU has also agreed to update the divorce deal to allow a possible extension of the transition period “for up to one or two years” if needed to agree the new future relationship.We will veto BrexitHowever, the issue of Gibraltar remains, with Spain demanding a veto over applying any agreement on post-transition relations to the territory on its southern border which it has long claimed.Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, current holder of the rotating EU presidency, conceded the problem as he arrived for pre-scheduled talks with May in Downing Street.”There are some issues now regarding Gibraltar with Spain, but I hope that we can keep the unity among the 27,” he said.May, who spoke to Prime Minister Sanchez about the issue on Thursday, took a firm line, however.”Gibraltar’s British sovereignty will be protected, and the future relationship we agree must work for the whole UK family,” she told MPs.But late Thursday Sanchez maintained his threat to scupper the deal.”After my conversation with Theresa May, our positions remain far away. My government will always defend the interests of Spain,” Sanchez wrote on Twitter.”If there are no changes, we will veto Brexit.”last_img