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Testing Times For The Last Fifa Official Match Ball Jabulani

“Jabulani” is the latest in a long line of balls to bear the FIFA APPROVED quality mark, certifying that they have undergone a series of stringent tests to guarantee their suitability for all levels of football. To make sure that it will play the same way whether it is kicked in the first minute of a match or the 90th, a FIFA APPROVED ball must withstand seven high-precision checks of its circumference, size, roundness, rebound, water absorption, loss of pressure and its shape and size retention. To test the ball’s roundness, for example, its diameter is measured in 16 places with the difference between the highest and lowest measurements having to vary by no more than 1.5 %. To pass the shape and size retention test, the ball is fired 2,000 times against a steel plate at 50 kilometres per hour, after which the seams and air valves must remain undamaged with only minimal loss of pressure and shape permitted. By demanding the same high standards of all balls bearing the FIFA APPROVED mark, FIFA ensures that players can rely on the same quality whether they are using the ball in the final of a FIFA World Cup or in their local park. The quality mark is more than just a standard of technical quality, however. It also sets an ethical standard in the fight against child labour since all manufacturers using FIFA marks (both FIFA APPROVED and the second tier FIFA INSPECTED mark) are contractually obliged not to use child labour.