Lampard supports plans for high altitude practice for the team

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London, Dec 7(ANI): England midfielder Frank Lampard has said that he supports plans to test the national team's players on coping with high altitude during next year's World Cup in South Africa.

Those hoping to be sent to South Africa will be judged in March as they continue the build-up to their first match against USA almost 5,000 feet above sea level.

"I'm not quite sure about the methods and the build-up. We've already got a very fit bunch, but the altitude thing is something we've got to counter and I'm sure the team will do anything they can to get ourselves acclimatized," Sky News quoted Lampard, as saying.

Last month, manager Fabio Capello had put the current squad through their paces and more monitoring will be held the next time the squad convenes at its Hertfordshire base.

Only two of the regular squad members - Shaun Wright-Phillips and Wayne Bridge - have played before at altitude in South Africa.

The England team would play their fixture either in Rustenburg or in Bloemfontein, which is 4,529 feet above sea level.

Complicating matters further will be the different flight of the new World Cup ball at altitude and at sea level.

According to reports, the ball will fly around five per cent more quickly, and with less bend, in Johannesburg (5,749feet) than it will in Port Elizabeth.

"The lower air resistance at altitude changes the flight path of the ball. For a given kick velocity or force, the ball will travel that bit further at altitude compared to sea level. That will take some getting used to once you get to altitude and your body and your mind gets used to that different flight path," said Professor Andy Jones from Exeter University.

"But, then to go immediately to sea level where the flight pattern is back to where it was originally might also take some adaptation before you're able to read where it's going to fly and where it's going to land," he added. (ANI)

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