Monday, June 14, 2010

Jabulani..Why They're Afraid Of You? The Facts and The Myth

The Facts

About The Ball

Jabulani - meaning 'to Celebrate' in the isiZulu language - is the name of the new ball for the FIFA World Cup 2010™.

Made, as ever, by Adidas - the world's leading Football equipment manufacturer, the Jabulani ball builds on their years of scientific excellence. With their history of official FIFA World Cup balls (from Telstar to Teamgeist™) the balls have improved year on year, though not without attracting some controversy along the way.

Regular balls are made with 32 hexagonal panels. The Teamgeist for World Cup in Germany 2006 had only 14 panels. The Jabilani ball has an amazing 8 panels. Goalies will be happy with the 'grip n groove' texturing, which is also to aid smooth flight (think golfballs). It is a heavy ball, and has bonded 3d panels - moulded spherically to retain shape and create a seamless spehere. The number 11 carries heavy symbolism - the tribes of South Africa, the players in a football team. In honour ofthis, there are 11 colours used on the ball.

FIFA Standards / Jabulani Ball Stats

FeatureFIFA Reg.JabuliniStanding
Circumference68.5-69.5cm69.0 +/- 0.2Average
Roundness1.5% Variance1.0%Go od
Water AbsorptionMax 10%0%Amazing
Bounce Variance10cm6cmGood
Leakage20% from 3 days10%Excellent
This table shows that the moulding technique means the ball r etains its shape, and the lack of seaming means there is essentially zero water re tention, which will reduce sluggishness of the ball if South Africa defies the odds and rains throughout the World Cup. The weight is interesting - being towards the higher end of the allowed scale means the flight will be truer and more predictable making keepers happy, but also rewarding accuracy for striker. The Myth This is what happened when you don't belief the cruelness of the Jabulani... 1.Misery Rob Green of England-

2.Wicked freekick for Hugo Lloris from France (Defeat to China 1-0)

3. Algerian Goalkeeper Fouzi Chouci blunder against Slovenia which caused them to loose the game

The so called Jabulani is not a curse by the Zulu's tribe but merely a new Adidas which has psychologically gives many of the goalkeepers some fear of loosing the game!


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