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Football: Hiroshima beat Kashiwa to win Super Cup

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Japan international striker Hisato Sato fired home the sole goal to give Sanfrecce Hiroshima a 1-0 win over Kashiwa Reysol to claim their second Super Cup victory on Saturday.

Toshihiro Aoyama sent a cross from the left to the centre, where defender Hiroki Mizumoto headed to set up Sato's volley shot in the 29th minute.

"I knew that Mizumoto would give me the ball after Aoyama's cross. Mizumoto also knew I was his right side. But it was too good to score like that," said Sato, the top scorer last season, who won the Player of the Year award.

"We will also have the AFC Champions League and it will be a tough season for us. I really want to share the joy with others once again," he added.

Sato, the top scorer in the Club World Cup in December, missed another goal opportunity when a spectacular overhead shot was finely saved by Kashiwa keeper Takanori Sugeno in the 57th minute.

Kashiwa came close to equalising when Brazilian midfielder Leandro Domingues hit a sizzling shot from a free kick from just outside the area, only to see goalkeeper Shusaku Nishikawa stop it in the 63rd minute.

"We got off to a good start to the J-League season," said Hiroshima coach Hajime Moriyasu.

"We were able to do what we've practised during the training camp. The Super Cup is one of the titles we target to win this season and we took it. It gives us a lot of confidence," he said.

It was the second time Hiroshima have won the Super Cup title -- a single match played between the J-League champions and Emperor's Cup winners -- after taking it home in 2008.

hf/ami

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130223/football-hiroshima-beat-kashiwa-win-super-cup