Japan international striker Keiji Tamada eased Kashiwa Reysol’s relegation worries by masterminding his side’s 3-1 win over Albirex Niigata in a rescheduled J. League first division match Wednesday night.

The 24-year-old Tamada created goals for Yasuhiro Hato and Mitsuru Nagata and completed a sparkling display with the third at Tokyo’s National Stadium to push the Chiba club further toward the safety zone.

The result moved Kashiwa five points clear of bottom club Cerezo Osaka in the overall two-stage standings with three matches of the season left to play.

Kashiwa took the lead after six minutes when Tamada played a neat layoff into the path of Hato, who beat Koichi Kidera with a rasping drive.

Niigata offered very little going forward but should have equalized when Brazilian striker Oseas scooped over from close range in the 32nd minute.

That miss was punished six minutes later when Tamada floated in a free kick from the right for Nagata to glance into the far corner.

Tamada killed the game off with a well-taken third from 20 meters shortly before the hour mark before Niigata grabbed a consolation through Fabinho 17 minutes from time.

In the evening’s other game, Brazilian Ueslei scored twice and set one up for compatriot Marques as visiting Nagoya Grampus Eight romped past Oita Trinita 4-0 to go third in the second-stage table.

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