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Rediff.com  » Sports » Colombia trounce Japan to top Group C

Colombia trounce Japan to top Group C

June 25, 2014 03:38 IST

Jackson Martinez of Colombia celebrates scoring his team's second goal against JapanJackson Martinez scored twice as Colombia beat Japan 4-1 to top World Cup Group C with maximum points on Tuesday.

The victory earned them a second-round meeting with Uruguay in Rio de Janeiro and ended Japan's interest in the tournament.

Already assured of progress, Colombia went ahead with a 17th-minute Juan Cuadrado penalty, only for Shinji Okazaki to equalize with a diving header before the break.

Martinez restored Colombia's lead with a sharp strike after 55 minutes and then produced a cool finish to make it 3-1 eight minutes from time before James Rodriguez added a delightful fourth goal with a clever run and chip over the keeper.

Colombia, who are in the last 16 for the first time since 1990, finished on nine points, with Greece going through in second place to face Costa Rica after their 2-1 win over the Ivory Coast.

Japan were bottom with one point.

Image: Jackson Martinez of Colombia celebrates scoring his team's second goal against Japan

Photograph: Christopher Lee/Getty Images