Opponent hits Klaasen with K-word

A SOUTH African tennis player Raven Klaasen has been left devastated after being called a "kaffir" by an opponent during a tennis tournament in England.

Klaasen's coach Stephan de Kock, says Australian Brydan Klein racially attacked Klaasen during the last round of a qualifying match during the Eastbourne ATP tournament.

Klein then proceeded to spit in the direction De Kock and another South African player Jeff Coetzee were sitting, De Kock said.

What has De Kock up in arms though is that following the slur, Klaasen's concentration was affected and he went on to lose the match to Klein.

"The ATP rules say that in the event of this sort of thing happening, the match should be stopped at once.

"I spoke to the match supervisor who instead chose to allow the match to go on. What about the victim? Who is there to help him? The truth is Klein is still playing in that tournament and he should not even be there," said De Kock.

Apparently, the umpire claimed he did not understand what "kaffir" meant.

Speaking through De Kock, Klaasen said he was saddened that something like this could be allowed to happen.

The Cape Town-born player is one of the country's few black players, and has represented South Africa in the Davis Cup tournament.