If you have been watching any of the world cup action, you might have noticed that the Adidas designed ball for this years games seems to travel a bit farther and faster than others. According to Professor Derek Leinweber, who heads the School of Chemistry and Physics at the University of Adelaide in Australia, it is because Adidas “Grip and Groove” surface on the ball creates greater levels of turbulence around the ball. This increase results in longer flights, with greater amounts of spin. This increase in spin will also have some of the world best goalies on their toes due to the unpredictable way the ball moves in flight. The ball meets all FIFA regulations, although it is a relatively small and heavy ball. Because of this game play should be faster and harder.
“Players are also discovering new opportunities to move the ball in erratic ways, alarming the world’s best goalkeepers,” said Leinweber. “By the time the ball reaches the goalkeeper, the Jabulani will have swerved and dipped, arriving with more power and energy than the Teamgeist.”
This is the eleventh ball that Adidas has designed for the World Cup, and the name Jabulani means “To Celebrate” in Zulu.