Two runners who snagged medals at a women’s relay in China are being accused of lying about their gender because of their appearance.
Liao Mengxue and Tong Zenghuan were awarded first and second place in a 400-meter relay at the National Track and Field Championships Finals held on Aug. 22-24. Their pictures drew attention when the state-owned People’s Daily posted them on Facebook on Monday, Aug. 26.
The two athletes in question are members of the Hunan women’s track team. The Chinese Athletics Association has reportedly confirmed that they are female, the South China Morning Post reported on Tuesday.
One commenter quipped: “They check for marijuana but not for penis?”
The team’s success last July at the National Athletics Championships in Shenyang drew comments on Weibo about the athletes’ gender. Liao took the gold in the 400m and Tong came in third place.
A video interview in May featuring Liao reveals her speaking in a low voice. At the time, they competed at the IAAF World Relay Championships in Japan. The video has over 800,000 views as of this writing.