She engages honestly and humorously in interviews, but speaks softly, never giving too much away. She’s at once shy and strong.
The woman who arrives at the DESTINY shoot, getting out of a gleaming Cherokee in impeccable sneaks, fresh braids and a sexy smirk, still seems a little timid. But before long, she, her wife Violet and powerhouse manager Becky Motumo are right at home, singing along to DJ Khaled and admiring Hugo Boss suit fabrics.
Semenya’s uncompromising about the things she loves, and the list is surprising. Firstly, Violet, whom she credits for persuading her to return to university to obtain her sports science degree. Her followers mean a great deal to her too and she’s committed to developing the talent of youngsters from rural areas with few resources. The eponymous foundation she’s founded is working on sports bursaries and development programmes for talented teens and she’s also the co-founder of a charitable initiative called the PrincessD Menstrual Cup project.
Make-up is another passion and Semenya repeatedly hints at wanting to do modelling work for brands. She proves to be an utter natural in front of the lens, with an easy and sensual understanding of her body and her face.
She’s also pragmatic and wise beyond her tender years.
“Running is a short-term career,” she says. “I am studying sports science so that I can work on a business. My goal is to have a sports facility, an institute for development,” she explains.
Discussing sport, the map she sketches for the next 10 years is staggering.