The Hiroshima Carp look like a team that's not quite ready to give up the Central League pennant they've held onto for the past three seasons — at least not without a fight.

They also don't look likely to relinquish the hold they have on the Yomiuri Giants anytime soon.

Yusuke Nomura threw six strong innings, the Carp broke open a tie game in a four-run seventh and the defending league champions continued their post-All-Star surge with an 8-2 win over the Kyojin in front of 44,708 at Tokyo Dome.