|Le Lavandou, France, August 29, 2004 - Second-seeded Jochem De Gruijter and Gijs Ronnes of the Netherlands won five-straight matches to capture the US$10,000 "International de France" here Sunday by defeating fourth-seeded Adrian Caravano and Guilherm Deulofeu of France in the finals.
A fifth-place finisher in the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour event in Austria last month, the Netherlands team scored a 21-19 and 21-13 win in 47 minutes over the fourth-seeded Caravano and Deulofeu to capture the gold medal and the $2,000 first-place prize. The French split $1,500 for the silver medal placement while sixth-seeded Fabio Galli and Andrea Raffaelli of Italy captured the bronze to share $1,200. The Italians had also placed third in last week's FIVB Corsica Satellite in Porticcio, France.
The 24-team FIVB Satellite event saw De Gruijter and Ronnes advance to the finals with a 21-16 and 24-22 win over Galli and Raffaelli, who eliminated top-seeded Dmitri Barsouk and Denis Tenenbaum of Russia 21-16 and 21-12 to earn a spot in the "final four." Caravano and Deulofeu scored a 21-13 and 25-23 semi-final win over eighth-seeded Philip Gabathuler and Jan Schnider of Switzerland.
In the bronze medal match, Galli and Raffaelli scored a 15-21, 23-21 and 15-13 win over Gabathuler and Schnider in 58 minutes. The Swiss had advanced to the semi-finals with a 21-23, 21-14 and 15-9 win over 14th-seeded Gregoire Capitaine and Quentin Marion of France.