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View Full Version : hit with my adidas GTX Pro-T (Lendl)


PrestigeClassic
07-06-2004, 12:39 AM
I finally hit with this new racket yesterday. It was for only a half-hour or so, but the start of a great relationship--I can feel it. I'm not sure what the strings are, but it has a new Gamma leather grip wrapped with Tourna Grip--excellent in itself. In a word, this stick is remarkable. The racket's high flex (RA 56?), enables the user to not only return hard, deep shots with ease, but low-bouncing short balls just as well. With all the ~13.7 ounces (388 grams) that this racket weighs, it really is as stable as a stock Prestige Classic in a respectably-sized hitting area.

Another aspect of a racket to which I pay attention is how well I am able to hit angles with it. I was only able to try hitting a few sharp groundstrokes, like when my hitting partner came into the net. I don't know about you, but sensing my opponent coming in means I go into kill mode. What, is that Ivan talking? Just kidding, anyway, the few sharp angles I attempted had so much bite to them! I don't know what I could attribute it to on this flexible frame, but I just heard a nice *click* among the string bed and some sweet ball fuzz in the air. But, on those few shots, I did hit the net tape or hit the ball into the doubles alley. Apparently, I still have much time before I get myself acquanted with the small head/sweet spot size and low power level. I don't know much about these kinds of racket dynamics, but maybe it was the fact that the racket face on this ~80 sq. in. stick is that much farther away from the hand, creating more leverage of some sort. Probably not related here, but does anybody remember Ivan choking up on his racket for his kills? I'd guess it was to lose some swingweight, but it is really astonishing to know how hard he hit the ball while he was choking up on a standard-length frame.

Volleys? They are just as great. I could volley back low balls deep and direct volley winners with good angles. I tend to hit some slow-approaching higher put-away volleys with a very slight swing and with a bit of topspin (kind of like a reverse-slice, or left-hander's slice, otherwise with the racket head in its proper position, up above the hand). The consensus is that flex generally isn't good for volleys, and I believe it, too, but the flex of this Pro-T really helped me carve those volleys. Half-volleys and other tough shots: those will have to wait for another hitting session.

Of course, the small head size leads to mis-hits being more pronounced. Even if the ball hits just a little high on the string bed, it is not a good result on any shot other than maybe on a drop volley. One of the first things you might notice after seeing at least a head-on picture of the frame is how wide the frame is where the throat bridge meets the rim. Not to mention, that wide area is very near where the sweet spot would be on a more modern frame. I hit one shot right on this really wide boxy area, and the ball went almost straight forward right to the other side of the net! By comparison, frame shots on a more aero, thinner profile frame cause mis-hits to go over the side fence or something! You also won't feel the mis-hit on a newer racket because the graphite is so stiff, thin, and brittle, so you don't even know where in the air to look for the ball. Talk about total feedback on the hand of the GTX Pro-T.

With some rackets with really stiff hoops like the Hyper Pro Staff 6.0 Tour 95 and the Pure Drive(?), the player can easily turn defensive positions into offensive ones. I mean, in an effort to return your opponent's shot, you can be stuck in no-man's land and be scrambling to the back court, and hit the ball a little off-center not to mention 26" from the end of the butt cap, even do a Roddick-style defensive forehand block, and practically hit a winner without thinking. Now, this Lendl racket doesn't do anything funny like that. You won't win as many matches, and you'll even lose winning rallies due to a small mistake, but if you're just hitting for fun, this racket is spellbinding.

Even the grip shape is interesting. It seems to be somewhere in the middle of Wilson and Head. I can definitely feel how wide the bevels are that run parallel to the face. And just like holding a Head handle in its most comfortable position produces something along the lines of a semi-western grip; on a Wilson most comfortable is a more Eastern grip; on this adidas, the grip feels in between the two. Let me now tell you how important it is to have the correct grip shape to match your preferred playing grip. Only when you have the entire ends of your last three fingers placed square on only one bevel without them running over the next corner of the handle can you attain optimal feel on all of your shots. You can laugh, but it really seems to help having as many nerve endings as possible firm against the handle. Maybe it is also the hardness of a Gamma leather grip, something also new to me. Not a bad grip at all.

Needless to say, I can't wait to mess around more with this stick. But it likely in no way will replace my game-day Prestige Classic. I used to think that if I was stuck on a desert island for the rest of my life with only one stick, it would be a late St. Vincent Pro Staff like that Sampras played. But now, I might have to reconsider.

Has anybody else hit with this racket, or the similar-sounding Kneissl White Star Master or White Star Lendl Pro? I know that at least a couple people here have . . . How about the adidas GTX Mid-T? Does anybody know from where I can get an adidas stencil?

roundiesee
07-06-2004, 01:07 AM
I think Rabbit also has this stick (I seem to recall). Just curious- how much did you pay for it? Thanks. As for the stencil, have you tried going online? Some websites allow you to download the stencil (eg, Volkl). BTW, did the racket allow yo to hit a topspin back hand better than a slice, or could you hit both types of backhand equally well? Would've been interesting for you to play a set with this (your opponent should be using the St Vincentss- just to see which is better). Cheers!

yip kok kuin
07-06-2004, 01:27 AM
Lendl-adidas, I used to have one. excellent for groundstroke. great grip shape. the best I have ever used. volley is difficult because the racket doesn't flex. I used to think if I can find a racket that volley like a max 200g and groundstroke like a lendl-adidas, it is heavenly. found it in wilson ultra 2. you must try if to see what I mean. cheers.

Rabbit
07-06-2004, 09:28 AM
I have two of the Lendls. My impressions were pretty much the same as posted here. I thought the frame was remarkable. You are able to punish balls and hit through everything. The biggest drawback to the frame is if you don't prepare early enough. This is not a frame you can whip around and swing late with and expect good results. I may have to hit with mine again.

PrestigeClassic
07-06-2004, 10:29 AM
I think Rabbit also has this stick (I seem to recall). Just curious- how much did you pay for it? Thanks. As for the stencil, have you tried going online? Some websites allow you to download the stencil (eg, Volkl). BTW, did the racket allow yo to hit a topspin back hand better than a slice, or could you hit both types of backhand equally well? Would've been interesting for you to play a set with this (your opponent should be using the St Vincentss- just to see which is better). Cheers!
I saw it on **** for what TW was selling it last, so I snatched it up before anybody else could.

After trying to remember, my topspin backhands were a bit better than my slices. On my topspin backhand, I could really feel the racket pocket the ball just before release. Slices were nice, too. It is a heavy, flexible racket, so I was able to just stick the racket out and with a discreet swing, slice back the ball whether it was a shot that bounced just a few feet in front of me or if it was more of a potential approach shot. Keep in mind I have not been playing frequently, so my footwork was poor and I was contacting the ball all over the place. I was just wanting to rally back and forth and hit lots of shots. But I think topspin was better than slice. I hit this one pretty nice down-the-line topspin backhand, like with the placement I saw Sharapova hit in the finals to win the first set, I think. I didn't think it was that great of a shot until I saw my partner not even make an attempt for the ball as it was hitting the fence, he he. But since I didn't have time to prepare on some well-struck balls, I would skip the bigger backswing and just flatten out with pretty good results. I could see why Lendl did, too! :twisted:

lendl lives
07-06-2004, 10:32 AM
i had the mid t in high school. i thought it was lendl's. i wasn't good enough to know wether it was any good. plus i can't remember. i do remember everyone wanting to look at it though. lol.

PrestigeClassic
07-06-2004, 10:19 PM
Just a small update to anybody that cares to read about it: I played for the second time with this racket, this time in more of a match situation--a thrilling three-set win (for me). I say thrilling because normally I defeat this guy 6-3, 6-0; but I have not been playing much (neither has he).

Angle volleys around the net--In a word: superb. No matter if it was a defensive lob coming my way or a tough half-volley. After not being able to put away a few volleys, I finally missed one backhand volley, where the ball dropped too low and slow and I was not able to generate enough pace to send the ball over the net. But the racket at RA56 had plently of stiffness and I had good enough bite on my volleys. I'm sure the Gosen Micro 17 complements this racket in this regard. I hit back all my half-volleys (they didn't come to me hard), and hit one half-volley on the backhand side for a winner at around the corner of the service box. I think John McEnroe would have been proud with this frame and I bet he probably would have been better able to hang at the backcourt, though he was no slouch there as it was. I guess I'd have to try a Max 200G next.

Groundstrokes: When I went for flat put-aways using a full swing, I often hit the net. The same shots would have been winners with my Prestige Classic. So I had to drag points on for longer, which made things more fun for me. However, given a short ball, I rarely had problems putting them away on either wing (one-handed backhand), with plently of topspin for safety reasons. Now, on these shots I was not able to hit the ball as hard as I could with my Prestige Classic and still have the ball go in, but it wasn't too bad at all. It was nice to see some of these problems because it must mean that I am not using optimum technique, and that the Prestige Classic is actually helping me too much. If I can play better with this stick, I'm sure I could play better with my regular rackets, or at least with less potential injury or something.

One bad point though, I found very little directional control probably because of all the flex in the racket. I had some passing shot attempts go wide either way, not to mention some down-the-line forehand returns on the deuce side go either into the doubles alley or right to my waiting opponent. I guess next time I should try to flatten out those passing shots.

I was happy to hit a great forehand angle winner almost by accident--I must have swung too *early*. Also one other forehand cross-court winner came as a surprise. I was just rallying and on one stroke I must have had better-than-normal technique, hit the ball in the sweet spot, and was rewarded with a nice surprise. And given the small head-size, topspin is very easy to apply. It seems no matter where the ball is hit in the hitting area, the whole frame bends around the ball, cradling it, before sending it back.

Serves? This is where I thought the high swingweight would knock me down. But it wasnt too bad at all. There was one serve in the middle of the match where I played a little catch-up with the ball, couldn't get it there in time, and watched the ball sail out. You really have to have every part of your serving motion come together to serve well. But I did have a few aces. I hit a few flat and out wide into the corner on the ad side, and a few down the T on both sides. I wasn't able to hit the down-the-T slice that spins away from the opponent; then again, that serve is hard enough with a Pro Staff. One serve that I found using this racket was the into-the-body serve on the deuce side. Using my PC, I don't remember ever jamming my opponents as much. I'm kind of reaching here, but it seems this racket does have some characteristics closer to that of a Pro Staff than a PC. For a flexible racket, the hitting area has a lot of bite to mix with the pocketing feeling--very, very unique to me. But at the same time, if all goes well, deep flat serves are able to be hit like on the PC, just with more effort. I think my swingspeed must have in general been just a wee bit slow, as I had quite a few flatter serves go long. he he.

Though I was surprised at how easy this racket was to swing. Mine must also have more than 388g since it has a Gamma leather with Tournagrip. It must be due to the fairly head-light balance (with the pigskin suede grip around 6 points head-light, so mine more like 8 points?), and of course the small and egg-shaped head size probably doesn't hurt. However, once a shot is committed to, it is hard to change the stroke. I'll have to play around with lead tape in an effort to retain original balance, just kidding.

roundiesee
07-07-2004, 01:27 AM
Great account PC. Just wondering- did you experience any arm pain after playing 3 sets with such a heavy frame; And would you consider playing with same racket against a slightly higher ranked opponent? Thanks.

PrestigeClassic
07-07-2004, 02:06 AM
I forgot to mention that on a couple of high groundstrokes where I really took a modern swing, my shoulder hurt. But that has been a chronic problem for me with most any racket; I always do much better on lower balls. Serves incidentally were fine, much better than with the Tour 90, which my shoulder didn't like on our last outing. Other than that, I seemed to had gotten pretty used to the weight. But my swingspeed on all shots was noticeably slower. For reference, I am roughly 6'3", 215 lbs., with perhaps relatively weak shoulders.

Of course, I would love to play with a more experienced player. My first day, I was rallying with another friend of mine that happens to be at least a 4.5. We are fairly even though I think he has beaten me more times than not. Maybe if he is once again up for playing a blood, sweat, and tears set, I'll certainly give it a go with the adidas. I need to see how well I could do in transition and in all the other situations that come only when playing against a better player.