The Tri-Nations rugby win and bad losers

It was one of the most magnificent tries I have ever seen. With not too many minutes left in the game All Black Danny Carter hoofed the ball across the field near the touchline and Richie McCaw expertly caught it and snaked past — with a few minor collisions — about three Bokke in the…

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Why is Caster ‘our little girl’ anyway?

Poor Caster Semenya, magically transformed into a political football nearly a year ahead of the World Cup. Suddenly she finds herself a symbol of the injured womanhood of the nation, under attack by cynical and racist white people, both South African and Australian. What’s interesting is the repeated reference to Caster as “our little girl”….

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Semenya saga simply brings out the worst in South Africans

Seldom has there ever been such a clear and insane demonstration of hysteria overwhelming reason as we’ve been subjected to in the last week or so. Every two-bit hack in the country has churned out an article on sex or gender testing, how it’s done, and what it can or cannot prove. Almost every columnist…

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Kick Chiefs, Millwall and West Ham out of tournaments

In 1995 while acting for various syndicates of Lloyd’s of London I was fortunate enough to travel to the United Kingdom to meet with certain members of the underwriter. The trip lasted for ten days which gave me the opportunity to go and watch my beloved Derby County play on three separate occasions, the last…

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Caster’s revenge: The war on Australia

So, we’re at war with Australia again. As usual it is about sport. The conspiracy goes that it was Australian athletes who challenged Caster Semenya’s gender. They are the ones who accused her of being a man. Apparently after seeing the size of her shoe. Caster’s story has been hotly pursued by the Australian press,…

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Semenya: It’s about gender not race

Let me start off by saying that Caster Semenya is a chick until proven a dude. Oh, hang on, she has been proven to be a chick by her parents, her teachers and her friends, mind you. The accusations of racism levelled at the IAAF have been a bit excessive. But one can understand why…

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Is she the man she’s waited for all her life?

Once upon a time, a child was born to happy parents in Masehlong, in the Limpopo province, northern South Africa. As a young child, Caster Semenya understood she was different from the other girls. While the other petite girls were relishing their new socks at preschool, Caster was already the high jump champion in the…

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How we missed Madiba

It’s a strange feeling to watch the United States celebrate our heroes more effectively than we can. My father mailed me the link to the Arthur Ashe Courage Award presentation to Nelson Mandela which happened on the 19th July as part of the annual ESPY awards. If you haven’t seen it then stop reading now…

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What’s the agend(er)?

By Jennifer Thorpe Caster Semenya, an 18-year-old athlete from South Africa wins a race with such speed and skill that she becomes the target of “gender probes”. Now for those of you who aren’t already uncomfortable with the thought of any sort of probe, this one should make you run for the hills. For people…

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Peter de Villiers: Misunderstood genius or living on borrowed time?

This week’s Talkback question on the Mail & Guardian Online: Peter de Villiers: Misunderstood genius or living on borrowed time? (more…)

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