Jubalani means “to celebrate” in native South African language isiZulu. And this 11th official ball of the World Cup is a celebration- of the tournament, of the 2010 host nation, and of the beautiful game. The 11 colors present on the ball represent both the 11 players representing each country on the pitch at one time as well as the 11 languages of South Africa.
Adidas has designed official balls for the World Cup dating back to their 1970 Telstar, and looks to incorporate new technology and functionality into every 4 year release. The Jubalani is no exception, with its use of new grooved texture which provides players with maximum control and goalkeepers with increased grip, which will be needed as at higher altitudes the groove and grip surface is said to make shots travel up to 5% faster. The aerodynamic pattern of grooves boasts “Adidas’ most stable and accurate ball for flight to date.”
“According to the rigorous FIFA specification range for footballs, we have created a ball that is small and heavy allowing for maximum accuracy, perfect grip and exceptionally stable flight,” said Thomas Van Schaik, the Adidas Head of Global Public Relations.
Adidas also utilized a new minimized stitching design which allows for 8 thermally bonded 3D panels to be molded spherically rather than flat paneled molding of footballs in World Cups past.
As if the countdown to June 2010 wasn’t feverish enough for those of us obsessed with the sport, we can now add looking forward to seeing this ball in action to the excitement.
The ball is available for $150 in exact replica or for $40 you can purchase the replica with the same design, but without the grip and groove surface.
Take a look at Official balls of World Cups past: