Budva, Serbia and Montenegro, May 30, 2004 - Ricardo and Emanuel of Brazil took the 2004, Swatch - FIVB Serbia and Montenegro Open title in Budva on Sunday, beating Markus Diekmann and Jonas Reckermann of Germany by 2-0 (21-18, 21-19) in the final.
In front of a packed centre court crowd, the Brazilian masters enthralled all present with some sublime Beach Volleyball in a match that lasted 43 minutes.
Team Diekmann-Reckermann were always in touch with their opponents during the game, however, some nervous serving lost them crucial points in the early stages. Although Reckermann produced some clever winning spikes, he couldn't match the phenomenal Ricardo in the percentage stakes. A second set win would have set up a dramatic finale yet Ricardo and Emanuel were always one step ahead in this match and they eventually ran out deserved winners.
"I was very confident going into the match because we have been playing consistently well throughout this tournament and I knew we could maintain a high level in the final," Ricardo stated post match. Asked if the defeat in the recent China Open in Lianyungang was still weighing on his mind as the teams took to the court Ricardo urged, "Not at all. It didn't affect me a bit because that's part of the game and when you lose you always learn. Each tournament is very different and you learn from what you did in the past."
Ricardo's teammate, Emanuel, felt the German team may have been a little tense heading into the final and he believed that had an affect on the duo in the opening stages of the match. "I noticed that they were under pressure early on," he said. "You know, when you reach the final you really want to win and you can put a lot of pressure on yourself. Myself and Ricardo are more easy going, we know that if we make a few mistakes at the beginning we can keep going until we win the match."
Speaking immediately after the encounter, a slightly disappointed Reckermann mentioned, "We didn't play badly in this match. We tried to put some pressure on them with our service and we didn't achieve that goal. It was a good game but we lost and that's the way it goes sometimes." Reckermann's disappointment was short lived, however, as he was awarded the prize for the fastest serve (93.4 kmph).
Elsewhere, Patrick Heuscher and Stefan Kobel of Switzerland triumphed in the battle for bronze, beating Kristjan Kais and Rivo Vesik of Estonia 2-0 (21-17, 21-18).