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Barclays Premier League

Boleyn Ground (ATT 32,758) 16th August 2008 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: S Bennett

West Ham West Ham United vs Wigan Athletic Wigan

Deano double for Hammers

Debut man Zaki scores stunning volley

By Hayley Paterson.   Last Updated: 17/08/08 4:20pm

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Ashton: Bagged a brace

Ashton: Bagged a brace

A Dean Ashton brace was enough for West Ham to claim their first three points of the season as they beat Wigan 2-1.

Moment of the match: Dean Ashton's double brace within the first 10minutes - great way to open the season. Attempt of the match: Man of the match Wilson Palacios' well-driven strike was denied an equaliser as Rob Green was equal to it. Save of the match: Once again it was Rob Green's save from a Palacios drive. Talking point: Will Amir Zaki be one of the best buys of the season? Goal of the game: By a country mile, it was Zaki's volley from Emile Heskey's flick-on.

Both teams came flying out of the blocks in the Premier League opener at Upton Park, but it was the Hammers who broke the deadlock in only the fourth minute.

Julien Faubert did well down the right and whipped in a glorious ball into the feet of big man Ashton. With his back to goal, he spun past Paul Scharner and smashed a superb strike into the roof of the net, giving Chris Kirkland no chance between the sticks.

It was that man again as Wigan failed to deal with a West Ham corner, Calum Davenport hooked the ball back into the mixer and England international Ashton was on hand to poke the ball home from three yards.

Better team

The Latics were the better team in the second half and their hard work paid off when new signing Amir Zaki struck a stunning volley past Robert Green's desperate dive, after great work from Emile Heskey to flick it on to the Egyptian.

In the 15th minute another corner by Faubert almost led to a third goal when Carlton Cole's header had to be tipped over by the leaping Kirkland.

After the interval, it was Wigan who piled on the pressure with Heskey setting up a strike for new Egyptian signing Zaki in the 47th minute. It was all hands to the pump for West Ham.

Rocked

With boss Alan Curbishley having to field a team missing seven other first-team players - including Anton Ferdinand and Craig Bellamy - the Hammers were further rocked when their powerful hitman Ashton, appeared to strain his calf after taking a free-kick in the second half, and having to go off with 17 minutes left.

Both he and Scott Parker went off and Zaki, who has scored 27 goals in 48 matches for Egypt and is on a season-long loan from El Zamalek missed two further chances to earn Wigan a point.

Wigan kept trying to come forward as Carlton Cole forced Kirkland to tip over his back-header from another Faubert corner, and then cleared off his own line to deny Zaki once more.

Two minutes after the break, Wigan got their just rewards when Zaki showed he is one to watch this season with a superb volley to rifle home from Heskey's header.

The Latics continued to threaten, but it was the Hammers who managed to hang on for the three points.

West Ham UnitedTeam StatisticsWigan Athletic
2Goals1
21st Half Goals0
6Shots on Target3
7Shots off Target14
2Blocked Shots10
6Corners10
15Fouls12
1Offsides2
2Yellow Cards1
0Red Cards0
77.6Passing Success72.1
25Tackles20
72Tackles Success85
49.3Possession50.7
41.7Territorial Advantage58.3

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Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Chelsea 26 60
2 Manchester City 26 55
3 Manchester United 27 50
4 Arsenal 26 48
5 Southampton 27 46
6 Liverpool 26 45
7 Tottenham Hotspur 26 44
8 Swansea City 27 40
9 West Ham United 27 39
10 Stoke City 27 39
11 Newcastle United 27 35
12 Crystal Palace 27 30
13 West Bromwich Albion 27 30
14 Everton 26 28
15 Hull City 27 26
16 Sunderland 27 25
17 Queens Park Rangers 26 22
18 Burnley 27 22
19 Aston Villa 27 22
20 Leicester City 26 18

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