A brace from Junya Ito and one from Kenyan international Michael Olunga in the opening 35 minutes is all Kashiwa Reysol needed to shock Japanese league joint leaders Sanfrecce Hiroshima at Edion stadium on Saturday.
Junya broke the deadlock on 23 minutes before completing his double four minutes later. Olunga claimed his third goal for Reysol 10 minutes to the break.
Victory halted Kashiwa’s four match winless run as they moved out of the relegation zone to 13th position with 33 points after 29 rounds.
Hiroshima, winless in previous five games, are joint top with Kawasaki Frontale on 56 points though the former have played a game less.
Olunga had scored in the team’s 3-2 defeat to Urawa Reds last Sunday as the race to avoid relegation from the 18-team league hots up with five matches to go.
In the Belgian Pro League, left back Abud Omar clocked 90 minutes in Cercle Brugge’s 2-1 win over Sporting Charleroi on Friday.
Compatriot Johanna Omollo was not on the match day squad as Cercle, who fell 4-0 to giants Club Brugge last weekend, rose to ninth on the 16-team table with 12 points after ten rounds.
The three players depart for Addis Ababa on Sunday to link up with Harambee Stars ahead of Wednesday’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) Group “F” qualifier against Ethiopia.
Elsewhere in China, Beijing Renhe, who edged out Henan Jianye 1-0 in the Chinese Super League, will miss the services of speedy winger Ayub Timbe for two weeks.
The Kenyan picked a shoulder and knee injury that has ruled him out after scoring seven times in 11 games for the sixth-placed side.
“Out for 2 weeks with a knee and shoulder injury but I will be fully recovered for the next game,” Timbe posted on his Facebook page on Friday.