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Speaker: Knuckleball

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  • George Darroch,

    As I understand it, the major issue with the ball is its surface.

    It's specially designed with millions of tiny grooves on the surface. As on a golf-ball, these mean that turbulence caused by drag of air against the surface is reduced. A reduction in the number of seams, from 32 (to 16 in 2006), to 8 also decreases drag.

    Normally a player can get the ball to spin by applying pressure unevenly to the ball with a kick, and this spin increases the drag. Because one side of the spinning ball is rotating into the wind, and the other with it, the ball curves. A ball with less drag curves a lot less, and continues in a straight line over defenders or over the posts. This is a problem for players, and particularly those taking penalties and corners.

    The upside of this is that we drew with Italy, who were unable to score from their multitude of corner kicks. It also helped the goalkeeper against powerful long-balls.

    I love the Jabulani.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    What, no gloating about the (cursed) luck of the Irish causing the French to self-destruct?

    Someone needs to plot a graph of "french national team football" from a head butt four years ago to today. Is a consistent decline, ups and downs, is this as low as it has ever gone?

    Since Nov 2006 • 6217 posts Report Reply

  • horse,

    I appreciate that reflexive argument against a conventional wisdom is pretty much Pundit 101, but arguing that the fucking vuvuzela is not the most annoying innovation in sport fandom is frankly asking to piss your credibility out the window.

    As I've said elsewhere, I'm sure the atmosphere at the game is amazing, and if that endless Bb drone appeals to the SA fans then so be it. But Television pays for the event to happen, and on television that drone is purely an irritant and should be stopped.

    And yes, apparently World Cup class football is a cynical game of professional diving, as practiced by nearly everybody.

    Palmerston North • Since Feb 2007 • 32 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    And yes, apparently World Cup class football is a cynical game of professional diving, as practiced by nearly everybody.

    I liked it the other day when the Chilean striker (I forget his name) dived in the penalty box, was booked by the ref and proceeded to congratulate him. As if to say "yeah, you got me. Fair enough bro!"

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    Diving is, in my opinion, the reason why football will struggle to be taken seriously here and in to an extent in the US

    It could mean a change in the rules and it would be odd if the ref blew for a foul and then checked with a video ref and was wrong. What do you do then?
    A drop ball?
    But Sep Blatter doesnt like that new fangled technology. So figuring out a solution wont happen till he F's off.
    And all the psychological stuff about under dogs.... underperforming favourites makes my head hurt.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1234 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    What, no gloating about the (cursed) luck of the Irish causing the French to self-destruct?

    Hmmm, some consolation for that awful qualifier.

    I think my vision of the game is very much shaped by the fact that video-replays, and video-refereeing are part and parcel of my sport watching experience, and have been for a very long time. I don't like things that detract from the flow of the game, and would be the first one to object to their introduction during play. But reviewing and striking out goals that clearly resulted from deliberate hand-balls? Who could object to that?

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    But Sep Blatter doesnt like that new fangled technology. So figuring out a solution wont happen till he F's off.

    I'd have thought a good compromise solution would be:

    * the referee calls it as he sees it;
    * anyone caught out on the TV goes before the football judiciary facing fines, or match bans, or whatever it is that people face in football.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3011 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    It's what happens already in the case of violent play or simulation. Not hand ball.

    Example: Tassotti elbowed a Spanish player in the quarter final of the 1994 WC, the ref didn't see it, but the TV did. Tassotti was suspended for eight matches and that meant the end of his international career. Not much consolation for Spain however.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed,

    I wonder how much FIFA profits from the on-field theatrics?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4403 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    I think it's time I posted something positive!

    Did anyone else see DPR Korea v Portugal? It was almost tragic to watch the Koreans be so thoroughly battered, but the beauty of Portugese play well and truly made up for it

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I wonder how much FIFA profits from the on-field theatrics?

    Huh? How?

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    Diving is, in my opinion, the reason why football will struggle to be taken seriously here and in to an extent in the US

    Diving throws into stark relief a cultural faultline between two definitions of masculinity and confirms some the most deeply held assumptions of Anglo-Saxon superiority over the rest. A New Zealander would no more imagine an All Black taking a backward step from an opponent than a Huscarl would have dreamed of adandoning his brother warriors in the shield wall at the moment of crisis; Whereas the behaviour of the Italians (for example) simply goes to prove the Latins are not made of the same stern stuff as us and come from a history long on treachery, regicide and marrying their close blood relatives.

    To us, by diving they debase their manliness and cast themselves out from the ranks of men; For them, it is just a way to win a game.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1817 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Edit: ah, forget it. I shall retire to my girlie man's quarters with a copy of Foreskin's Lament.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Edit: I can't be bothered either.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I swear the last couple of days have been like living in a Stephen Jones column. Somebody make it stop!

    In other news, the race for the MP who could suck up to the All Whites the slurpiest has a supreme winner. Kick it in the guts, Trev.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

  • ChrisW,

    To us, by diving they debase their manliness and cast themselves out from the ranks of men; For them, it is just a way to win a game.

    Yeah - take Andy Haden - he dived and cast himself out of a rank of men - or was it a column? Row? I always get them confused, anyway a line of them. Won the game, sure, but ever since he's been scorned as unmanly.

    (Too easy, unsporting even)

    Gisborne • Since Apr 2009 • 847 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    (Too easy, unsporting even)

    Too easy? We haven't even touched the 'shield walls are an Anglo-Saxon thing Italians wouldn't understand' thing. I have to assume this is some kind of performance art.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4371 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I am also confused about the inbreeding thing. I thought we bred pretty widely and enthusiastically.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    Yeah. There's a reason they study islands in population genetics.

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2136 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Hannah,

    Not to mention the theory that Anglo-Saxons don't do treachery. Slanderous! Admittedly we don't always do it well (see John Terry) but damn it, we'll give it our best shot.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 224 posts Report Reply

  • Naly D,

    "picked up speed after you kicked it"

    The actual quote was "the ball picks up speed as it hits the air" and it was at the half, not full time</pedant>

    Wellington • Since Sep 2008 • 307 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    It kept Shakespeare in business for a while, that English treachery.
    So Mr Semmens heard of Captain Pugwash's first mate.
    I jest.
    This jocular sports stuff is kinda fun ...... for a while.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1234 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    The actual quote was "the ball picks up speed as it hits the air" and it was at the half, not full time</pedant>

    You left an 'n' out of pendant :)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2081 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    I think the most momentous aspect of this All Whites campaign is that it has been carried out without a Pom in sight.

    Kiwis on the coaching bench. Wonderful.

    See, we can do "worldwide sports" without the benefit of carpet baggers.

    Re the Ball. The Uraguyan goal the other day from outside the box that went over the players and dipped into the goal. Amazing curve downwards. All because the kick imparted topspin to it. Those nice little nipples that are good for the boot to grip are providing the air hugging characteristics. And the knuckleball analogy was spot on for those shots at the keeper and they just parry it away because it just weaves a wee bit in the air. Nasty. But hey, isn't it great theatre!!!!

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1502 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    The Uraguyan goal the other day from outside the box that went over the players and dipped into the goal. Amazing curve downwards. All because the kick imparted topspin to it.

    No, it's because it took a deflection on the edge of the box.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7390 posts Report Reply

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