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Page last updated at 14:54 GMT, Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Winston Reid sympathises with New Zealand quake victims

By Leon Mann
BBC sports reporter

Winston Reid
Reid played for New Zealand in the 2010 World Cup

New Zealand's Winston Reid said his joy at scoring his first goal for West Ham was quickly put into perspective by the earthquake in Christchurch.

Reid scored West Ham's fourth goal in a 5-1 FA Cup win over Burnley on Monday.

He told BBC Sport: "It was a fantastic night, but the earthquake put it into perspective. It is devastating and my heart goes out to everyone back home."

The 22-year-old has friends and cousins in the Christchurch area, which was hit by the 6.3-magnitude quake on Tuesday.

When Reid heard the news he called home immediately but had some initial problems reaching his loved ones.

"Because of the quake, the phone lines and cables were all down, so it took a bit of time to get through, which was worrying," he explained.

It is not a large country, but the spirit among the people there will be what gets them through

Winston Reid

"I had to get messages through and get them sent on to others, but my family and friends are OK.

"Everything is turned upside down, but they are all feeling so fortunate and so am I, that they are all alive. That is the main thing, because people have lost their lives, which is tragic."

The defender, who joined West Ham from Danish side FC Midtjylland in August 2010, has admitted that he is still in shock and has been watching the news intently for updates.

"Even if you live in a country where earthquakes happen, I don't think you are ever fully prepared for it," he reflected.

"I am thinking of everyone back home, especially those who have lost loved ones and have had their lives changed because of this.

"It is not a large country, but the spirit among the people there will be what gets them through. They will all help each other out and help each other recover from what has happened. My thoughts are with everyone."

Reid's headed goal on 59 minutes helped West Ham stroll into an FA Cup sixth-round tie at Stoke.

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see also
West Ham 5-1 Burnley
21 Feb 11 |  FA Cup
Win boosts Hammers - Hitzlsperger
22 Feb 11 |  FA Cup
NZ quake rescue runs into night
22 Feb 11 |  Asia-Pacific

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