• Kyodo

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Japan midfielder Koji Nakata and Cameroon striker Patrick Mboma both found the target Saturday as East beat West for the third successive year in the annual J. League All-Star game with a 3-1 win in front of a crowd of 34,669 at Sapporo Dome.

News photoEast forward Choi Yong Soo (10) heads the ball to shoot during the first half of 2003 J. League All-Star Game on Saturday at Sapporo Dome. The East won 3-1.

Nakata opened the scoring after 28 minutes when he arrived unmarked at the far post to head home a free kick from Kashima Antlers teammate Mitsuo Ogasawara and Mboma added a second with an unstoppable 20-meter effort five minutes later.

Tokyo Verdy’s Takuya Tamada put the game out of reach with a header from Ogasawara’s corner on 65 minutes before former Japan star Kazuyoshi “Kazu” Miura of Vissel Kobe pulled one back for the West, stabbing home at the far post with five minutes remaining.

Tokyo Verdy striker Mboma, who has scored eight league goals for his club this season, was named the man of the match.

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