The Swiss beach volleyball duo of Sascha Heyer and Markus Egger have won the European Championships in Jesolo, Italy.
In an all-Swiss tournament final, Heyer/Egger fought off tough competition from their compatriots, Paul and Martin Laciga, to win the match 2-0 (21:18, 23:21).
Spectators who were on hand at last year's final in Bilbao, Spain, would have been forgiven for feeling a sense of déjà vu on Sunday, since the Swiss finale turned out to be a replay of the 2000 tournament.
The Lacigas emerged triumphant twelve months ago, but this weekend it was the turn of Heyer and Egger to take their revenge.
Though the Laciga brothers have proved to be the strongest Swiss contenders during the World Beach Volleyball Tour this season, it was Heyer and Egger who took control in Italy.
The pair proved they were on winning form during their semi-final match against the Norwegian duo, Kjemperud/Hoidalen, who are currently ranked second in Europe.
As the tournament's wild card entry, Heyer/Egger had not been expected to make it all the way to the final, which made victory all the more sweet for the Swiss pair.
"We've been able to maintain our level of play over our last few games," Egger said, "and have improved steadily throughout the season."
Victory for Heyer/Egger in the men's competition rounds off a strong weekend of Swiss beach volleyball performances.
On Saturday, Nicole Benoît and Simone Kuhn took the silver medal in the women's tournament and with it the first ever podium place for the Swiss female pair, after narrowly losing in the final against the Greek duo, Karadassiou/Sfyri.
swissinfo with agencies