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By ESPN Staff

Bundesliga: Van der Vaart inspires Hamburg

BERLIN, Nov 25 (Reuters) - Captain Rafael van der Vaart scored his eighth goal of the season to lead Hamburg SV to a 2-0 home victory over Hansa Rostock in the Bundesliga on Sunday to stay in third place just one point behind leaders Bayern Munich.

Van der Vaart took a fine pass from Dutch team mate Romeo Castelen on the right and fired a low shot past Rostock goalkeeper Stefan Waechter to the left corner in the 19th minute in front of a sellout Hamburg crowd of 57,000.

Croatia striker Ivica Olic doubled HSV's lead just after the hour, heading in a cross from midfielder Piotr Trochowski for his sixth goal of the season.

HSV extended their unbeaten run to 13 matches in all competitions. It was also Hamburg's third successive Bundesliga win at home and fifth in seven matches this season.

Bayern, who beat VfL Wolfsburg 2-1 on Saturday, lead the table with 31 points. Werder Bremen are second on 30, ahead of Hamburg on goal difference.

In Sunday's other match, Nuremberg beat Borussia Dortmund 2-0.

Hamburg, who learned coach Huub Stevens would leave for PSV Einhoven at the end of the season, were in control most of the way with Van der Vaart leading the attack.

The Dutch midfielder was a constant threat with six shots on goal, more than all of Rostock.

'We were a bit shaky at the start but the first goal came out of nowhere and we were able to control the match,' said Stevens, who had said he would return to the Netherlands to care for his ill wife.

'We were a bit careless at the start but all in all I felt we deserved to win. There's a good spirit on the team. Our goal is to finish better than last year.'