ATHLETICS : Uganda’s Nakaayi surges to 800m Gold

DAVID GOMBE

Ugandan Halimah Nakaayi claimed the women’s 800m title at the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) World Championships on Monday in Doha.

Caster Semenya a three time 800m world champion missed out due to IAAF rules on testosterone levels and restrictions placed on intersex athletes to compete in certain women’s events.

The 24 year old profited from the changes and beat American duo of Ajee Wilson and Raevyn Rogers to win gold in 1:58.04.

Raevyn finished second to claim silver while Wilson who was the favorite heading into the race had to settle for bronze. Uganda’s Winnie Nanyondo was fourth.

In her interview with BBC afterwards, Nakaayi expressed her delight

“Oh my God. At first i couldn’t believe that at 700m i was still with Wilson. But i saw her pace was a little bit declining and i was feeling strong. And i knew yes, God has made it for me.”

Nakaayi becomes the first Ugandan to race away to the 800m glory at the IAAF championships.

Women’s 800m world champions

2019 Halimah Nakaayi (UGA) 1:58.04

2017 Caster Semenya (RSA) 1:55.16

2015 Maryna Arzamasava (BLR) 1:58.03

2013 Eunice Sum (KEN) 1:57.38

2011 Caster Semenya (RSA) 1:56.35

2009 Caster Semenya (RSA) 1:55.45

2007 Janeth Jepkosgei (KEN) 1:56.04

2005 Zuila Calatayud (CUB) 1:58.82

2003 Maria Mutola (MOZ) 1:59.89

2001 Maria Mutola (MOZ) 1:57.17

1999 Ludmila Formanova (CZE) 1:56.68

1997 Ana Quirot (CUB) 1:57.14

1995 Ana Quirot (CUB) 1:56.11

1993 Maria Mutola (MOZ) 1:55.43

1991 Liliya Nurutdinova (URS) 1:57.50

1987 Sigrun Wodars (GDR) 1:55.26

1983 Jarmila Kratochvilova (TCH) 1:54.68 CR

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