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KASHIMA, Ibaraki Pref. — Takuya Nozawa scored with a picture-perfect free kick as Kashima Antlers maintained their stranglehold over J. League rival Gamba Osaka with a 2-1 win on Saturday.

Gamba arrived at Kashima Stadium hoping to get the better of an Antlers side that took all six points from their league meetings last season and began the new campaign with a penalty shootout victory in the Fuji Xerox Super Cup.

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