• Kyodo

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Japan striker Yuya Kubo struck for the third time in as many games as Gent beat Zulte-Waregem 2-0 in the Belgian championship playoffs on Tuesday.

The 23-year-old Kubo opened the scoring in the 24th minute at Regenboog Stadium by chesting a cross from the right into the net, taking his tally to eight goals in 12 games since joining Gent from Swiss club Young Boys in January.

Kalifa Coulibaly added a second for Gent in the 93rd minute to seal the victory.

“I got lucky,” Kubo said. “I was expecting a low ball, but it came up here (his chest). It was fast, and all I had to do was get on the end of it.”

Kubo has wasted no time making his presence known as the ace at Gent, which is unbeaten with three wins and two draws halfway through the six-team playoffs.

Next, it hosts leaders Anderlecht on Sunday.

“It’s why I’m here, that’s my role,” Kubo said. “They brought me here with high expectations. I’m glad I’ve been able to live up to it so far, but I have to keep it up.”

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