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The Ball is raised... the journey is over

End of the Road

“It is here. Feel it. Touch it. It is here.” Says a Bafana, Bafana grandmother as she meets The Ball and welcome us to the World Cup.

The Ball has arrived at Soccer City, just hours before the World Cup Opening Ceremony. We kick The Ball to the stadium. We juggle The Ball with fans from around the world with the stadium behind us and the roar of hundreds of Vuvuzelas all around.

Celebrate The Ball... it is here!Celebrate The Ball… it is here!

We call out “One Ball” and a crowd reponds in unison “One World”…

Then a Mexican fan takes charge… “When I say Una pelota everyone replies Un mundo… Una pelota… un mundo… Una pelota… un mundo…”. The crowd gathered is dancing. The Ball is held aloft and celebrated.
Next up is a French fan: “Une balle. Un monde”…
Finally a German fan: “Ein Ball. Eine Welt”…

Four Ball Carriers and The BallFour Ball Carriers and The Ball

Phil and Christian stand either side of Andrew, arms interlocked. Richard is up on Andrew’s shoulders. Christian and Phil pass The Ball to Richard. Richard lifts The Ball up in the air in front of Soccer City.

The Ball is raised... the journey is overThe Ball is raised… the journey is over

The Ball’s epic journey is over.

There are 32 teams represented at the World Cup. 32 panels on The Ball. 32 countries The Ball has visited in the past 138 days. Over 17,000 people have kicked or headed and signed The Ball.

With an African ball, we have learned that this is Africa’s World Cup. We’ve seen that people on this continent are generous, friendly and full of life. We’ve come to care passionately about Special Olympics’ and the fantastic work that organisation is doing across Africa.

It doesn’t matter if you are black, white, orange or red…. it doesn’t matter if you are old or young…. nor if you are male or female…. it doesn’t matter if you are good at football or not and it certainly doesn’t matter whether or not you have an intellectual disability… The Ball is for everyone…

One Ball. One World.

Written by on Saturday, June 12th, 2010

4 comments on this post

  1. Many congratulations to one and Ball.

  2. Not fare well,
    But fare forward, voyagers. (T.S.Eliot)

    Congratulations and blessings.


  3. Congratulations and thank you for sharing the journey with us. Even from halfway around the world, it was awesome in every way! Onward!

  4. football gifts June 29, 2010 at 10:05 am

    A great journey and a great World Cup that will hopefully benefit many in South Africa

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The Ball 2018 left England on 25th March 2018 and travelled to the World Cup in Russia.

The Ball 2014 kicked off from England on 9th Jan 2014 and headed to the World Cup in Brazil.

The Ball 2010 left England on 24th Jan 2010 headed to the Opening Ceremony in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The Ball 2006 travelled from London to the Opening Ceremony in Munich, Germany.

The Ball 2002 was carried 7000 miles across Europe and Asia to the World Cup finals in Korea & Japan.