Chinese Runners Removed from IAAF
Chinese Runners Removed from IAAF: The exclusion of two prominent Chinese female track runners from the IAAF world rankings has sparked renewed discussion about their gender, following previous accusations that they were biologically male.
During the 2019 National Athletics Championships, Liao Mengxue and Tong Zenghuan gained international attention when they won the 4x400m relay race as part of the Hunan Province team. However, their appearance drew more attention than their athletic abilities. Some people believed they did not look feminine enough and accused them of masquerading as women to gain an unfair advantage in women’s athletic competitions. Claims were made about their Adam’s apples and the appearance of their groin area, but the controversy eventually subsided. The debate has been revived recently due to Liao and Tong’s exclusion from the new IAAF world rankings.
Back in 2019, a Weibo user commented on Liao Mengxue and Tong Zenghuan’s masculine appearance, mentioning their prominent foreheads, a hint of Adam’s apples, and bulge in their crotch area.
Others speculated that their hormone levels had been greatly affected by the use of performance-enhancing drugs, suggesting they had abused substances like anabolic steroids to increase testosterone levels. The Chinese Athletics Association confirmed that both athletes were indeed female, but the debate persisted until it eventually faded away. The recent IAAF world rankings announcement has reignited the discussion, with many interpreting the exclusion of the two athletes as evidence of their male gender.
After competing at the 2019 Doha World Championships, Liao Mengxue and Tong Zenghuan reportedly participated in only a few domestic competitions, which raised suspicion among some. Additionally, in June, the Chinese Athletics Association instructed athletic centers to conduct strict blood testosterone tests on female athletes. Athletes exceeding a certain level would be prohibited from participating in national and international competitions.
Critics of the two athletes believe that the new testing standards make it impossible for them to compete in women’s events in the future. However, there are opposing views, as expressed in a Tencent article, suggesting that the controversy surrounding Liao and Tong’s gender is merely a conspiracy theory. The article mentions that Tong may have retired, which would explain her absence from the IAAF rankings. As for Liao Mengxue, she allegedly got married and became a mother. Nevertheless, she still appears in the rankings but at a much lower position, currently ranked 527th.
As part of the ongoing debate, a video showing Liao Mengxue speaking in a deep, masculine voice has resurfaced, fueling rumors that she is biologically male. However, the official position of the Chinese Athletic Association remains that both Liao and Tong are biological women.