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Thursday, 24 July 2008

Japan 2-1 Australia (U23)

"Get the goal, get the goal, Okazaki, get the goal!"

And get the goal he did! A stiflingly hot Thursday evening in Kobe saw the Japanese under 23 Olympic team face off with their Ozzie counterparts in a pre-Beijing friendly. With Kaito and Honda both donning national team colours, and with Okazaki on the bench, it was a great night for the 'Pulse and one they should be proud of. Having gone 1-0 down to the Ozzies just after the half hour, Japan pulled level five minutes later with a goal from Cerezo Osaka teenager Kagawa.

After that it took till the last minute of the game for Japan to snatch their winner, and who should it have come from but our very own super-sub Okachan! Glancing in a header which foxed Ozzie keeper Federici, the goal came too late for any kind of comeback, and when the whistle went, the bloke with the biggest smile was the man who came on in the 74th minute and won Japan the game! Nice one, Shinji - Shizuoka's proud of ya!