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Times Of India Thursday, Mar.28, 2013
Oscar Pistorius can leave South Africa to compete in international track meets, a judge ruled on Thursday as he upheld the Olympic athlete’s appeal against some of his bail restrictions.
Pistorius’ agent told The Associated Press that this year’s world championships could be “on the radar.”
His passport will be held by a court while he is in South Africa, and he can only leave the country if he provides an itinerary of his travel plans at least a week before he is due to leave. Pistorius must also hand his travel documents back to the court within 24 hours of returning home.
The ruling in a North Gauteng High Court opens the way for the Paralympic champion, who is facing a life sentence if found guilty of murder, to run in international competitions again.
Pistorius’ agent, Peet van Zyl, told the AP soon after the ruling that Pistorius could even run at the world championships in Moscow in August _ if he wanted to and if he qualified.
The judge’s decision was “fair,” Van Zyl said, but any return to competition would be up to Pistorius, who hasn’t run competitively since September or trained for two months.
“He’s going to be the one that determines running and training,” the agent said. “It’s his call. He’s the one under all the pressure for the court case and grieving for Reeva.”
Although Pistorius’ lawyers said Pistorius himself, a double amputee widely known as the Blade Runner for his prosthetic legs, did not attend the court session.
“He has no desire to compete now but it might change and it will change,” defense lawyer Barry Roux told the judge in arguing for some of Pistorius’ bail restrictions to be eased.
Roux said Pistorius would not try and evade trial if he is allowed to travel internationally, and would eventually need to run again “to earn an income.”