Athletics South Africa (ASA) President Aleck Skhosana has explained why the Olympic champion Caster Semenya is in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic preliminary squad.

ASA announced a preliminary squad of 63 athletes in November that includes Semenya and the injured Wayde Van Niekerk. Semenya is still banned from competing by the World Athletics Governing Body IAAF.

The final team will be announced by the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) closer to the games.

ASA intends to provide athletes with multiple opportunities to achieve the qualifying criteria on home soil.

These will include a series of Grand Prix meetings set for March and April, along with the ASA Senior Track and Field and Combined Events Championships, to be held in Tshwane in April. Skhosana met with the preparation squad and their personal coaches about the preparations last week.

SA’s Track and Field team disappointed at last year’s IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

The team failed to bag medals, after having clinched three gold, one silver and two bronze medals at the London Champs in 2017. Skhosana is confident they will perform well at the Olympics. – Report by Vincent Sitsula