HAMBURG, April 1 (Bundesliga) - Hamburg remained solid defensively in collecting a victory at home against Wolfsburg on Sunday to put more room between themselves and the relegation zone.
Mehdi Mahdavikia scored the game's only goal at the hour mark for Hamburg, who have given up just one goal in their last seven games.
Huub Stevens' team have now collected five victories and two draws in their last seven matches, improving to 32 points and 10th place - three points from the drop zone.
The Dutchman decided to coach his Hamburg side on Sunday despite his wife being seriously ill in his homeland. Stevens missed most of training during the week and returned to northern Germany on Saturday.
But it didn't seem to affect the team, which were in last place before their current upward trend.
Wolfsburg suffered just their second loss in nine games but dropped to 11th place, even on 32 points with Hamburg.
Hamburg were dominant throughout the first half but couldn't find the goal.
Raphael van der Vaart struck the cross bar in the 23rd minute after running onto a long bouncing ball and lobbing Wolfsburg goalkeeper Simon Jentzsch.
Van der Vaart hit the right post four minutes after the re-start, trying to beat Jentzsch to the near corner from nine yards out.
Wolfsburg's first real chance came in the 54th minute when Jonathan Santana hit the cross bar with a long-range shot from 28 yards.
And Hamburg finally scored at the hour mark. Van der Vaart backheeled the ball to David Jarolim, whose shot was blocked down by Jentzsch but the rebound went directly to Mahdavikia, who pounced on the ball from five yards out.
That seemed to finally wake up Wolfsburg, who were closer to equalising then Hamburg came to doubling the lead.
Hamburg keeper Frank Rost was forced to fend off two good long-range chances by Marcelinho in the 73rd and 77th minutes. Two minutes later Rost had to deflect over his goal a shot by Diego Klimowicz.