Christchurch:A New Zealand club cricketer has been suspended for four matches for calling a rival Sri Lankan player "f... monkey", local media has reported.
Lancaster Park-Woolston all-rounder Ben McCord was handed the punishment at a code of conduct hearing last week for calling Marist batsman Niranjan Nagelswaran, a former New Zealand under-19 player, a "f... monkey", the Christchurch Press newspaper said.
McCord made his remark after he was hit for a boundary in a premier grade two-day match. Neither Nagelswaran nor Tim Muir, the other batsman at the crease, heard McCord's expletives, but umpire Phil Agent did and reported the matter to the authorities for "abusive language".
The paper said that McCord could appeal to the high court.
India's Harbhajan Singh was penalised 50 percent of his Test match fee for allegedly using foul language against Australia's Andrew Symonds in the second Test in Sydney last month.
He was penalised after the original allegation by Symonds, of allegedly being called a "monkey" by the off-spinner, could not be proved in the appeal hearing.