World's media mob All Whites hero
Winston Reid's header from heaven has landed him on a World Cup rollercoaster ride with members of the world's media queuing up to film New Zealand's latest sporting hero.
The lad from Takapuna, via Denmark, earned the All Whites their first points at a World Cup and put him firmly in the international spotlight.
The 21-year-old defender, of FC Midtjylland in the Danish Superliga, took it all in his stride as camera crews from Denmark, Italy and Australia were after him.
He came face to face with Danish broadcasting legend Ulla Terkelsen who normally covers wars in Iraq and Afghanistan between Olympics and World Cups. This seasoned reporter knows a good story when she sees one ''and Winston is a great story''.
''He is big news in Denmark,'' Terkelsen said after interviewing Reid during the All Whites recovery session at the plush fitness complex in Johannesburg.
''We haven't had much to celebrate (after losing to the Netherlands) so Winston has given Denmark something to smile about.''
Reid, who has a slight Danish twang, fluently switched back and forth between his first and second language for whatever was required. ''It's pretty easy,' Reid said, ''I speak it all day up there, but still speak English at home. Try to keep it (English) going, because I don't use it a lot.
The Aucklander said he also used to speak a bit of Maori, growing up with two Maori parents, ''but I can't remember, it's been so long'', after moving to Denmark as a 10-year-old.
The scoring defender, who started a striker with Takapuna AFC, told the assembled media pack that he normally only scores a couple of goals in a season, ''but this was a great one get off the mark for the All Whites.''
He admitted that it was not a tactical ploy to join Rory Fallon in the frontline for the final minutes, but that he just happened to be lingering. ''I was going up for a free-kick but the ball was going back and forward so I just decided to stay up there.'' With devastating results.
With friends and family on both sides of the globe revelling in his success, Reid said his last 24 hours had been ''a bit hectic''.
''This time yesterday I was preparing for the game, but since then my phone has just gone off the hook,'' Reid was overwhelmed by the attention and barely knew how to cope with all the messages. ''When I got back on the bus I got over 100 messages and 40 missed calls. I went onto Facebook and that was horrible as well. It was swamped. ''Where do I start? If I start answering it, it will just come back so how does it stop?
Jokingly the new Kiwi star said he may need a secretary to deal with all his fan mail, but turned down the suggestion he should use one of the All Whites media managers. ''Nah, I need a girl.''
Judging by all the female attention the tall youngster has been getting in South Africa, there should no shortage of volunteers. ''Yeah, there should be a couple that want to help me and are good on the computer.''