Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Soccer Board Will Test Microchip Ball

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Soccer Board Will Test Microchip Ball

Article excerpt

A soccer ball containing a microchip that beeps when it crosses the goal line will be tested at this year's under-17 world championship tournament.

The International Football Association Board, which makes the rules for world soccer, agreed to the trial Saturday at its annual general meeting in Cardiff, Wales.

The microchip ball, which was produced in part by Adidas, was used in a game between Nuremberg and Nuremberg reserves on Wednesday in Germany.

When the ball crosses the line, the microchip transmits a signal to a watchlike device on the referee's wrist, making either a beep or vibration.

"Not a day goes by without technology making progress," FIFA president Sepp Blatter said. "We therefore have a duty to at least examine whether new technology could be used in football."

Blatter added that the key issue is to make sure the technology does not undermine the officials or rules of the game.

The English Football Association also offered to experiment with the ball. However, the Premier League and Football League use balls made by rival manufacturers.

RUSSIAN WOMAN BREAKS POLE VAULT MARK

Yelena Isinbayeva of Russia broke her own indoor pole vault record Saturday, clearing 16 feet, 1/2 inch at the Lievin (France) meet.

Isinbayeva cleared the height on her first attempt, setting a world record for the 12th time in her career. She then asked for the bar to be raised to 16 feet, 6 3/4 inches, but failed to clear it.

On Feb. 18, Isinbayeva became the first woman to clear 16 feet indoors when she did it at the Norwich Union Grand Prix. She set the outdoor world record in Athens last August when she won the Olympic title with a mark of 16-1 1/4 .

The 22-year-old has set three indoor world records this season.

NORTH FLORIDA SOFTBALL TEAM GETS SWEEP

UNF's softball team defeated Felician University in a doubleheader in Cocoa Beach on Saturday. The Lady Ospreys won 8-0 and 10-1, with both games ending because of the mercy rule.

"It was a great offensive day for everybody top to bottom," UNF coach Sonya Wilmoth said. …

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