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작성자  LuvTennis 작성일  2018.12.28 11:34 조회수 282 추천 0
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 Babolat Pure Strike 18x20 Racquet Review  
첨부파일 : f1_20181228113452.jpg
 
 

Summary

The Tennis Warehouse playtesters were impressed with the Babolat Pure Strike 18x20 from their very first strikes of the ball. Perhaps thats not surprising when you consider how big a hit its 16x19 counterpart was with our testers, and the fact that the Pure Strike family is also heavily endorsed by professional players, most notably by Dominic Thiem. The Hybrid Frame Construction of the Pure Strike 18x20 is intended to provide an excellent feel and response, while FSI Power technology aims to boost power and spin potential. Our TW playtesters immediately found the control and spin they were looking for with this racquet. It felt quick up at net and offered a solid and responsive feel. Whether starting the point with a serve or a return, our TW playtesters were able to be aggressive and take control of the point. Players with fuller swings who are looking for a racquet with all around performance should look no further than the Babolat Pure Strike 18x20.

Power 84
Control 86
Maneuverability 89
Stability 86
Comfort 86
Touch/Feel 89
Serves 85
Groundstrokes 92
Returns 91
Slice 88
Topspin 84
Volleys 87
Overall 89

Groundstrokes - Score: 92

The Babolat Pure Strike 18x20 courted the TW playtesters with exceptional feel and control, and slightly less free power than the Pure Strike 16x19. As a big fan of the previous version, as well as the 16x19 version of the Pure Strike, Chris was very excited to test this racquet. He said, "From the first hit I loved the control and feel I had on my shots. I felt like I could control the ball very, very well, and I was dialed in on my targets. I enjoyed the grip I was getting on the ball when I hit my slice backhand. I felt like I had a lot of control over the ball with that shot. I wasnt getting as much topspin as I did with the Pure Strike 16x19, but I wasnt too far off. There was also less power here compared to the Pure Strike 16x19. The lower power level let me take bigger swings at the ball when I wanted to be aggressive. I felt very confident attacking short balls, both when I was looking to hit an approach shot and when I wanted to go for a winner. The downside was that it made me work a little harder in defensive situations. I didnt have quite the same ability to bail myself out of trouble with one big swing. Both the Pure Strike 16x19 and my Pure Drive Plus give me what I call bailout power -- the ability to switch from defense to offense with one big shot. Im going to try stringing this racquet around 42 lbs to see if I can get some of that pace and depth back."

The Pure Strike 16x19 is Hannahs racquet of choice, so getting to playtest the 18x20 version was exciting for her. She offered, "I have always gravitated toward 16x19 string patterns, and this frame was no exception. With that being said, there were aspects to this denser string pattern that I really enjoyed, and even preferred in some circumstances. The qualities of the Pure Strike beam that drew me to this frame in the first place were the dampened, yet crisp response, and the connected feel I got at impact. The beam was comfortable, even more comfortable with the 18x20 string pattern, and I really liked the amount of feel this racquet provided on contact without bothering my arm. Other than feel, the 18x20 pattern called for fuller swings, which in some circumstances I really liked. I found that I could hit targets and put the ball away easier when paired with good positioning. Lastly, the sweetspot was much smaller on the 18x20. While I could still play an aggressive baseline game, I had to be much more precise, and I found it was slightly tougher to adjust when catching balls on the rise, running around to hit a forehand or reaching out wide."

"It was a seamless transition to go from my own racquet, the Pure Strike 16x19, to this 18x20 version," Jason said. "It still has that same great feel and responsive feedback that I enjoy. I felt like there were some positives and negatives to the tighter string pattern. On the downside, I wasnt getting as much free power as I was with the 16x19, and the sweetspot seemed to be slightly smaller. The upside was the increase in control that let me swing out a little more."

Brittany also enjoyed the easy adjustment into the Pure Strike 18x20. She said, "Right off the bat, I really liked the feel of this racquet from the baseline. It was very easy to pick and play points right away. The only adjustment I had to make was to the 18x20 string pattern. I predominantly use 16x19 string patterns, so I had to make some small adjustments to be efficient. I was missing a little spin, so I wasnt going for as sharp of angles as I normally do. Nonetheless, my groundstrokes were landing deep in the court with ample pace. I could play close to the baseline and take balls on the rise to give my opponents less time to react."

Volleys - Score: 87

Up at net, the Pure Strike 18x20 was maneuverable and offered excellent feel in the hands of the TW playtesters. Brittany enjoyed coming up to net to finish the point. She offered, "The racquet is quick and crisp at the net. I felt very confident coming up to end points with a volley. I felt very connected to the racquet, and the stringbed was very predictable. I found success with half-volleys and hitting shorter, more angled volleys."

Chris loved the Pure Strike 18x20s performance at net. He praised, "I had lots of control and the racquet felt very comfortable. I found the Pure Strike 18x20 maneuverable enough to be effective on tough pick up volleys and half-volleys. I also felt like I was fending off body volleys well -- in part due to the racquets maneuverability and partly due to a tip I got when hitting with doubles world No. 1 Bethanie Mattek-Sands (thanks, Beth!). I could whip it through quickly on overheads, and it was easy to add a little zip to volleys when I wanted. I liked the comfortable response. The racquet offered enough dampening even with a firm co-poly like Solinco Hyper-G in it, yet I still had a good connection to the ball."

"The same connection and feel I achieved at the baseline followed me to the net," Hannah said. "The Pure Strikes maneuverability and crisp feel were perfect for transitioning from the baseline to the net. I had no difficulty getting depth on my volleys and ending the point. The 18x20 string pattern offered even more stability and connection to the ball at net."

Volleys were one of the areas Jason preferred the 16x19 string pattern over the 18x20. He explained, "When I was able to hit a clean volley I thought the racquet was phenomenal. It had nice touch, good power, and plenty of spin. Dare I say that in those moments I preferred it over my own Pure Strike 16x19? But for the times I didnt hit the ball cleanly, I appreciate the forgiveness the Pure Strike 16x19 gives me. In those instances, of which there are many, Id give a slight edge to my own racquet."

Serves - Score: 85

From spin and control to racquet head speed and power, the Babolat Pure Strike 18x20 offered a little bit of everything to the Tennis Warehouse playtesters serves. Hannah had no complaints. She raved, "This racquet providing a good amount of power and pop on my serve, and I found it easy to maintain control and spin. It was easy for me to swing and get good wrist snap. I was having success with my flat, slice and kick serves."

Jason was impressed with the Pure Strike 18x20. He compared it to the 16x19, saying, "I was hitting my serves with nice pop and control, and I wasnt missing many RPMs compared to the 16x19 model, which surprised me. I was just getting solid results when serving with this racquet."

"It was tough determining if I served or returned better with this racquet!" exclaimed Brittany. "I could generate some serious heat down the middle of the service box or change it up and slice the serve out wide to pull my opponents off the court. The Pure Strike 18x20 was also forgiving on second serves. I could be a little tentative and still have positive results."

Chris continued to play well with this racquet. He said, "I liked the spin and control I had. I was hitting my slice serve very well and could add some pace to that shot without losing consistency. I felt confident going after both first and second serves. I found I could be aggressive and still keep my consistency up. Compared to my regular racquet I was down a tad on speed when giving my serve the beans, but since I tend to use spin and direction more it wasnt much of a factor."

Returns - Score: 91

The TW playtesters found the Pure Strike 18x20 to be a weapon on the return thanks to the fast and solid feel. Jason actually liked the 18x20 version more than the 16x19 version on returns. He said, "The Pure Strike 18x20 was very solid on returns. The racquet didnt feel like it got pushed around too much, even against some bigger serves, and I was able to get decent depth on my returns. I felt like I could swing slightly more freely and fully compared to the Pure Strike 16x19 because of the lower powered response. It allowed me a greater margin of error."

Brittany loves to hit returns, and the Pure Strike 18x20 was a weapon in her hands. She said, "The Pure Strike 18x20 swung fast and was stable when I was returning even the hardest of returns. I liked having the ability to redirect my opponents power on first serves and create my own power on second serves, which allowed me to always be on the offensive. I felt confident knowing where my return was going to go."

"I returned very well with this racquet," said Chris. "I just felt very connected to what I could do with the ball. I was driving the ball with a lot of confidence, chipping it well and even going for a little more than usual. I definitely had more control than I have with my Pure Drive Plus. Even when I missed a shot I had a solid idea of how much Id overhit as soon as the ball left the racquet."

Hannah was able to be aggressive on her return, starting off points with confidence. She wrapped up the playtest by saying, "Just like when I return with the 16x19, I could shorten up my swings, take a step inside the baseline and get a good powerful response to any type of serve without any shock to my arm. Fast, accurate and comfortable returns were a big plus side to this racquet."

Overall - Score: 89


Babolat RDC Ratings

ScoreGrade
Flex Rating67Range: 0-100
Swing Weight325Range: 200-400
Technical Specifications
Length27 in69 cm
Head Size98 sq in632 sq cm
Weight11.4 oz323 gm
Balance Point13 in 33 cm4pts Head Light
Construction21.3mm / 23.3mm / 21.3mm
CompositionGraphite
String Pattern18 Mains / 20 Crosses


















 
 
   
 
 
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