OGAWA, Ibaraki Pref. (Kyodo) Veteran Masahiro Kuramoto edged another step closer to his first win on the Japanese tour in eight years when he carded a 1-under-par 70 on Saturday to stretch his lead to four strokes heading into the final round of the Acom International.

The 48-year-old from Hiroshima, who has led since setting a new Japanese tour record of 12-under-par 59 in the first round, knocked down three birdies on a spotless front nine at Ishioka Golf Club and had two bogeys after the turn for a 54-hole total of 15-under 198.

Kuramoto, whose last victory came at the 1995 Suntory Open, leads Yusaku Miyazato, who had a 69 for sole possession of second place.

Yamaguchi in front

RIFU, Miyagi Pref. (Kyodo) Overnight leader Hiroko Yamaguchi carded a lackluster 1-over par 73 but still holds a one stroke lead after the second round of the Miyagi TV Cup Dunlop Ladies on Saturday.

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