Rampant Uzbeks race clear

Uzbekistan won 7-3 in Singapore to strengthen their position at the top of Group 4 in Asian qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ and put a huge dent in their opponents' aspirations. It was Singapore's biggest game in years and the nerves got to them, with a catalogue of schoolboy errors sealing their fate.

They twice came from behind in the first half, with goals by Aleksandar Duric and Mustafic Fahrudin cancelling out strikes by Timur Kapadze and Victor Karpenko. But Server Djeparov hit a double - and Vitaly Denisov added another - to put the visitors 5-2 up at half-time.

Substitute Aziz Ibragimov and skipper Maksim Shatskikh struck for the Uzbeks after the interval, while John Wilkinson bagged a consolation goal for the hosts.

The Uzbeks now have nine points and top the pool having already upset Saudia Arabia 3-0 and beaten Lebanon 1-0 in Beirut. The Saudis can close the gap to three points if they beat Lebanon at home later today, which would leave Singapore struggling for survival when they make the trip to Uzbekistan on Saturday.