city of Berlin has long been a staunch supporter of
Beach Volleyball, having hosted highly-successful men's
World Tour events for the past ten years. And this year
will be no different as the Swatch – FIVB World Tour
returns to this historical German city. A total prize
fund of $300,000 is on offer to the male and female
superstars of the sand in the season’s first Grand Slam
One year ago, the newly formed Brazilian partnership of
Harley Marques Silva and Franco Jose Vieira gained their
first victory at a World Tour event when they overcame
Argentina’s Mariano Baracetti and Martin Conde in the
final. The Argentine pair, who were carrying the tag of
world champions into the game, were stunned by their
Brazilian rivals who had only combined forces three
months previous to this event.
In the women’s event, Ana Paula Connelly and Sandra
Pires completed a dramatic comeback in the final to win
gold. Having at one stage been match point down to Holly
McPeak and Elaine Youngs of the United States, the
Brazilian ladies emerged victorious from a marathon
final tie-break set (15-13).
Germany is now producing some of the Tour's most
promising Beach athletes as the country and its European
neighbours are continuing to enjoy a boom in Beach
Volleyball and Berlin has a proud history of staging
major international sporting events. With the recently
elevated Grand Slam status organizers are planning for
huge numbers of spectators in what will surely be one of
the most spectacular events of the 2004 season.
will again transport 1,500 tonnes of sand into the city
center for the event in Schlossplatz, one of the most
historic parts of Berlin where they will create a
'downtown' beach for the world's finest Beach
Volleyballers and expect some heightened tension at this
year’s events as all teams involved will be hoping to
secure some valuable points towards Olympic
There is always a carnival style atmosphere in Berlin
when the Swatch - FIVB World Tour comes to town and this
year will be no different. Berlin has long been staging
major international sporting events and the organizers
of the Beach Volleyball Grand Slam competitions always
get things spot on in putting a fantastic show together
both for players and spectators.
After the German Open, the Men’s and Women's Beach
Volleyball World Tour moves north to the Norwegian
coastal city of Stavanger for the $150,000 Norway Open.
Men's Podium 2003
First Place: Harley-Franco BRA
Second place: Baracetti-Conde ARG
Third place: Ricardo-Emanuel BRA
Harley Marques Silva wins the
'Speedo Most Valuable Player Award'
Jonas Reckermann won
the 'SWATCH-Fastest Service Award'
for the semifinals after being recorded at 97.2