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Nigeria win friendly match marred by fans' stampede

By Mark Gleeson

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Nigeria proved too strong for North Korea in their final World Cup warm-up in a match interrupted because of stampede outside in which at least 14 people were injured.

Ticketless fans pushed down a gate, seriously injuring a policeman, as they attempted to pack into the small stadium in Tembisa, on the outskirts of Johannesburg.

Police asked match officials to halt the game four minutes into the second half but it was resumed a few minutes later, once police had cleared an overcrowded main stand and stopped a crowd of some 500 outside from attempting to enter the ground.

Only 8,000 tickets were available for the game.

Nigeria took a 17th minute lead through Yakubu Aiyegbeni after a series of swift passes through the center of the Korean defense.

A penalty converted by Victor Obinna on the hour doubled the score but the North Koreans pulled one back within a minute.

Elderson Echiejile's errant back pass was intercepted by Jong Tae-se, who scored from close range.

A sparkling run and cut inside from Kalu Uche three minutes from time saw substitute Obafemi Martins score a third for the Nigerians.

Cha Jong-hyok was sent off with 13 minutes remaining after collecting a second yellow card.

After successive draws against Saudi Arabia and Colombia, it was the first win for the Nigerians under new coach Lars Lagerback.

(Editing by Jon Bramley)