The biggest sporting event on the planet earth, the football World Cup 2022 will take place in Qatar from November 21 to December 18 and FIFA revealed ‘AL RIHLA’ The FIFA World Cup Qatar Official Match Ball.
The FIFA World Cup Qatar Official Match Ball
Made in Pakistan Sialkot, the city famous for making meticulous and finest quality sports goods and has been supplying footballs for mega-events for a long time.
Together with China, Pakistan has been supplying the football balls to be used in the mega event, which this time will be held in the winter instead of the summer due to the hot weather in the Qatari capital.
“We have once again been chosen to supply soccer balls for the World Cup, which is an honor for us and a testimony of the quality we have maintained,” said Khawaja Masood Akhtar, the chairman of Forward Sports, a contracting manufacturer of global sports brand Adidas.
According to Forward Sports Managing Director Hassan Masood;
“This brand, which will be used in Qatar World Cup, is too much responsive and is faster. The 25 percent elements, which have been used in this brand, are sustainable and this brand is made of re-cycled material.”
He said 3,000 footballs will be used during the World Cup in Qatar while their replicas sale target is eight million. “Its weight ranges from 425 to 445 grams while its size is from 68.8 cm to 69.3 cm,” he added.
Production of high-quality footballs is not Sialkot’s only specialty. It also exports sports goods ranging from cricket bats to hockey sticks and from shining balls to other accessories like kits, shoes, and gloves.
The country earns $1 billion annually from sports goods exports, including $350 million to $500 million from footballs alone which itself is an astonishing figure.
Named “Al-Rihla,” Arabic for “The Journey,” the official match ball for the 2022 World Cup was unveiled in March by Adidas in Doha and manufactured by Forward Sports (which also makes footballs for the Bundesliga, the French league, and the Champions League.
Although Forward Sports was also the official football provider of the 2014 and 2018 World Cups in Brazil and Russia But this time Adidas came up with a unique idea featuring connected ball technology for the first time.
“This is the third time that our product will be used in the World Cup. Before this we had made footballs for the 2014 and 2018 World Cups also,” Mr. Hassan explained.
Connected ball technology will be a handful for referees and match officials as it will provide the VAR team with precise ball data in real-time to support fast and accurate offside calls.
Another interesting and distinctive Al Rihla has is the ‘Adidas Suspension System’ that will allow the most time-precise motion sensor to ever be used in mega event official match ball, tracking every touch of the game at a rate of 500 times per second.
Not just connected ball technology Al Rihla is featured with the 500Hz inertial measurement unit (IMU) motion sensor inside the ball that will empower the collection of very accurate ball movement data and transmission to Video Match Officials within seconds throughout the world cup.
The sensor is powered by a rechargeable battery, which can be charged by induction.
Adidas’ 2022 World Cup ball has an all-new panel shape design. The shape of the panels is inspired by traditional dhow boats and especially the characteristic triangular sails used on them. The ball is made from a total of 20 panels.
The Al Rihla 2022 World Cup ball went on sale on Adidas.com on March 30, 2022. It will be available everywhere, including independent retailers, from April 13, 2022.