18x19 pattern Club - Djokovic, Medvedev, Agassi and...

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
Don't know if or for how long Aggassi might have used the standard pattern for his OS Radicals but for a considerable period of time played a custom pattern of 20x21- If memory serves me right he started using it way back in the original bumblebee rad PT57 and for several subsequent iterations of that frame. @vsbabolat you probably know more specifics about this (?)
Agassi never used a PT57. I have to look up what the code is for the Radical Oversize. I know a guy that was stringing on the tour back then and I can get a precise date of when he used 29x21 and 18x19.
 

Zodd

Hall of Fame
Agassi never used a PT57. I have to look up what the code is for the Radical Oversize. I know a guy that was stringing on the tour back then and I can get a precise date of when he used 29x21 and 18x19.

yes of course - I was caressing one of my bumblebee 630s when i wrote that and had a brain fart
 

galapagos

Hall of Fame
Agassi has an obsession with 18x19. Made Djoker switch to it and now Korda.
I am curious how he explains his love to this pattern. How he understands it, what is his perspective (totally subjective or maybe some data behind it)
It might be not so easy to encourage a pro with developed strokes to change his setup.
Is it more power? More comfort? More spin ? More forgiveness ? How much can 1 string make a difference to a pro ? :)
 

dr325i

G.O.A.T.
I am curious how he explains his love to this pattern. How he understands it, what is his perspective (totally subjective or maybe some data behind it)
It might be not so easy to encourage a pro with developed strokes to change his setup.
Is it more power? More comfort? More spin ? More forgiveness ? How much can 1 string make a difference to a pro ? :)
The PT167 and PT113B2 layups are fairly similar, the TK167 and TK113B molds are almost identical (minus the ridges) and. My LM Radical MP and my NoVAK rackets are set up to identical spec, 336g, 31.7cm, 335SW strung. They are strung to 52/48 gut/Hawk rough and I can tell you that the 18x19 PT113B2 offers slightly more power. The mains spacing is slightly more spread out on the 18x19 than the 18x20 so I’d assume that also adds slightly more spin at the Pros level…
 

veelium

Hall of Fame
Agassi has an obsession with 18x19. Made Djoker switch to it and now Korda.
I guess that's mainly due to the racquet technician that worked with Agassi, Roman Prokes.
He's also the one that worked with Djokovic when they tinkered with his setup during his comeback.

They are strung to 52/48 gut/Hawk rough and I can tell you that the 18x19 PT113B2 offers slightly more power. The mains spacing is slightly more spread out on the 18x19 than the 18x20 so I’d assume that also adds slightly more spin at the Pros level…
I'd so love to try that one out :)
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
I guess that's mainly due to the racquet technician that worked with Agassi, Roman Prokes.
He's also the one that worked with Djokovic when they tinkered with his setup during his comeback.


I'd so love to try that one out :)
I heard that Agassi was the driving force behind the 18x19 pattern. He feels it’s better than 18x20
 

blackfrido

Hall of Fame
I bought and I have been playing king of on and off a pair of Head Prestige MP 2021.
One of the most distinctive characteristics I found on this racquet is that the sweet spot is couple of inches down from the center of string bed.
Does anybody experienced the same thing?
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
How about a 18x20 without the top cross? Thinking about doing that with my TF40's

I've ran a Head prestige 97/98 MP/Pro?whatever you call these things nowadays 630 18X20 in an 18X19 with OK results - deleted the bottom cross. Not much difference in spin, touch more power and liveliness. Still decent control.
Also deleted the bottom on a blade with meh results. But the blade is somewhat open to start as 18X20's go. Lost some control, noticeably more lively.
I have a tf40 here, and it would seem, as with most other makes, deleting the top will make quite a gap. I can easily delete the top for a 16X18 on an 03 Prince TXT 310 and get more response, actually the entire performance improves especially towards the top of the hoop and loses mebbe 5% of the control, but that top cross is way up there. But if you go with thicker poly like 125, it may be doable on this tf40...
 

PCunique

New User
I have 3 TF40 305 18*20 (2*2019 & 1*2022). The heaviest of the bunch has a 320 SW when strung with 1.10 MSV Focus Hex Ultra. I'm tempted to try skipping the top cross on that one and compare the power/spin/launch angle against the other two. Will report back with my findings...
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
So out of curiosity, I bought a pair of graphene touch Prestige Tour 18X19's. They will likely need to be leaded up a lot to match my modded blades SW, but I am curious to see how they play.
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
So these puppies arrived with plenty of swingweight. I strung them 48X46 one with Lynx Tour with Tour Bite in the other, both 125 on top of 125 RPM Rough crosses.
They feel much more muted than I was expecting. So I guess Head's "Graphene Touch" is akin to counterveil?

173012772.tSFYfPNz.jpg
 

veelium

Hall of Fame
Haven't tried those but there is generally not much love for the graphene touch lines.

Personally didn't like the few that I tried (prestige pro, speed pro). Weird feel, don't remember how muted they were.
 
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WYK

Hall of Fame
Played a couple of sets of doubles with it this evening with the 18X19 Prestige Touch Tour 99. Slightly flatter trajectory than my 18X20 Blades. But I put 120 in those blades.
I would say the blades have slightly more accuracy and power, but I am used to them, so not fair to compare it yet. I hit perfect T serves my partner asked for, so I can't complain really.
The feel was quite good with the orange Lynx Tour. Very comfy, decent power, loads of spin and control. A bit brassy with the Tour Bite 125, but more spin and control.
The feel with Lynx Tour is so good it makes me assume that's what they used to develop the feel with. Felt much better at net than my blades.
The noise of this thing is fantastic.
And it is much more plush than the 65RA it supposedly is, even when framed.
I played confidently, so these will replace my aging blades from here on.
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
So here is something very curious. I brought out the GT Prestiges and hit with a partner who can put pace on the ball. And the whole time I was thinking, for how much lead this hoop has, it actually feels less stable and the sweet spot smaller than without. It also felt much more stiff and unforgiving. I thought I was having a bad day at first, but then got a wild hair and removed all the lead. Now the amount I used, and it's location, were magical on my Prince Textreme Tours and Blades - absolutely transformed them.
But once I removed it all from the Prestiges - POW. Sweetspot opened up, flex came back, spin came back(likely from just less weight), and the feel came back. Even the sound changed.
WTF?! Can it be possible that the engineers at HEAD knew what they were doing? I was just amazed.
Now - this thing still does have a smallish sweetspot as stock even if it is slightly bigger than my OG nBlade. But I do have thick Head Lynx 125 string in the mains. I'll try 120 and see how I get on.
 

BillKid

Hall of Fame
So here is something very curious. I brought out the GT Prestiges and hit with a partner who can put pace on the ball. And the whole time I was thinking, for how much lead this hoop has, it actually feels less stable and the sweet spot smaller than without. It also felt much more stiff and unforgiving. I thought I was having a bad day at first, but then got a wild hair and removed all the lead. Now the amount I used, and it's location, were magical on my Prince Textreme Tours and Blades - absolutely transformed them.
But once I removed it all from the Prestiges - POW. Sweetspot opened up, flex came back, spin came back(likely from just less weight), and the feel came back. Even the sound changed.
WTF?! Can it be possible that the engineers at HEAD knew what they were doing? I was just amazed.
Now - this thing still does have a smallish sweetspot as stock even if it is slightly bigger than my OG nBlade. But I do have thick Head Lynx 125 string in the mains. I'll try 120 and see how I get on.
Maybe it’s a SW issue?
If the SW went too high and you were hitting late that could explain the « symptoms »
 
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WYK

Hall of Fame
Maybe it’s a SW issue?
If the SW went too high and you were hitting late that could explain the « symptoms »

It could well be. But the stiffness was the worst part. I dunno what that was about. Maybe 65ra is my limit.
I still needed more plow, though. So I went and added weight to the handle with blutack. That did the trick.
However, I think the timing thing you mentioned is important. One of the first things you notice in these 18X19 99sq Prestiges is, unlike the Blades I am used to, their sweetspots are much lower in the frame. I had difficulty hitting that low in the stringbed.
It's a more traditionalists stick that way. I didn't notice this when I tested out one of the coaches 16X19. It appears the 1819 isn't nearly as lively towards the top.
I would say 'let's see if I get used to it', but I already have a Prince 100P LTD on the way, and that thing has a massive sweespot and feel by comparison...I don't like the Prestiges' chances.
 
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KC!

Professional
I've been hitting with my 2021 Prestige MP's again after kind of forgetting I had them. Decided to add weight to the tail to get a more head light feel and was amazed how much I like this racquet. New specs with 12 grams added to handle, Super Grap over grip- 336 SW, 7pt HL, 343 static weight, strung with Tour Hex 1.23 @ 50/48, First impressions- I felt super connected to the ball, generous sweet spot, there is slight flex in throat of this racquet that really feels amazing, very whippy, low launch angel, very controlled, really good spin, serve had a lot of pop & action on it, slices where great. I was amazed how much I liked this racquet after changing the balance point a few points.
 
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KC!

Professional
18x19 predictions for Australian Open? :) Korda, Medvedev, Djokovic?
I've been hitting with my 2021 Prestige MP's again after kind of forgetting I had them. Decided to add weight to the tail to get a more head light feel and was amazed how much I like this racquet. New specs with 12 grams added to handle, Super Grap over grip- 336 SW, 343 static weight, strung with Tour Hex 1.23 @ 50/48, First impressions- I felt super connected to the ball, generous sweet spot, there is slight flex in throat of this racquet that really feels amazing, very whippy, low launch angel, very controlled, really good spin, serve had a lot of pop & action on it, slices where great. I was amazed how much I liked this racquet after changing the balance point a few points.
Djokovic will be hard to beat, unless injury takes him down. Korda is playing incredible to start new year, hope to see him make a jump this year up the rankings! He is absolutely crushing the ball, played great against Djokovic.
Medvedev is always a constant, he will try to wear people down with his consistent play.
 

ChrisJR3264

Hall of Fame
18x19 predictions for Australian Open? :) Korda, Medvedev, Djokovic?
Easier to predict when the draw comes out. Korda is going to be a threat to some of the top 8 in round 3 or 4. Not sure if he’ll sneak into the top 32 or not for seeds. If he goes unseeded - ooof
 

ChrisJR3264

Hall of Fame
Djokovic will be hard to beat, unless injury takes him down. Korda is playing incredible to start new year, hope to see him make a jump this year up the rankings! He is absolutely crushing the ball, played great against Djokovic.
Medvedev is always a constant, he will try to wear people down with his consistent play.
Medvedev rarely Mishits if ever. He hits the ball so clean even with all his defense mechanisms.
 

veelium

Hall of Fame
With how Djokovic is playing, chances are good for another 18x19 slam.

I'm feeling the 16x19 for this one though, dunno why.
 

ChrisJR3264

Hall of Fame
With how Djokovic is playing, chances are good for another 18x19 slam.

I'm feeling the 16x19 for this one though, dunno why.

Novak is purely dominating right now and should be the favorite heading in. However medvedev, sinner have The ability to take him down on an off day in my opinion.
 

soulkeeper

New User
Any recommendation for strings for the tecnifibre 305 RS?
Preferably from these that I already own
Rpm blast 1.20 , razor code white 1.25 , tour hex 1.23 , silver 7 tour 1.25 , big spin 1.25 , gosen g spin 3 ,
Thinking of trying razor code first at 22/21
 

ChrisJR3264

Hall of Fame
Any recommendation for strings for the tecnifibre 305 RS?
Preferably from these that I already own
Rpm blast 1.20 , razor code white 1.25 , tour hex 1.23 , silver 7 tour 1.25 , big spin 1.25 , gosen g spin 3 ,
Thinking of trying razor code first at 22/21

Kirschbaum max power 1.25 or 1.30 ; solinco outlast and revolutions. And vokl cyclone tour 1.25

I will also say ice code performed excellent but I had some elbow issues from it. So I can’t say I’d recommend it without telling you that detail.

I did not like razor code at all. Just felt overpriced and underperformed.
 

galapagos

Hall of Fame
Any recommendation for strings for the tecnifibre 305 RS?
Preferably from these that I already own
Rpm blast 1.20 , razor code white 1.25 , tour hex 1.23 , silver 7 tour 1.25 , big spin 1.25 , gosen g spin 3 ,
Thinking of trying razor code first at 22/21
I am currently using razor code. Comfort, control, forgiveness. But you need RHS to unlock the spin. Tour Hex should be easier and more fun. Silver 7 Tour probably too "dead". Big spin 1.25 is ok but not the best all arounder.
For some reason most razor code users I know don't alter their mains and crosses tension.
 
I am currently using razor code. Comfort, control, forgiveness. But you need RHS to unlock the spin. Tour Hex should be easier and more fun. Silver 7 Tour probably too "dead". Big spin 1.25 is ok but not the best all arounder.
For some reason most razor code users I know don't alter their mains and crosses tension.
Hi Galapagos,nice to read your review and suggestions.I also have reel and plays razor code 18 on RS305 at 23/23 at the moment,its perfect string from the field cant argue on anything.One little issue when its freshly strung at this tension,first session it little hard to find exactly rotations on second serve sometimes(took me around 40 minutes to find depth and confidence)but its just better and better later.What is your oppinion or this,is that because of 18 gauge stringbed liveness maybe or does shoulder needs more rotations when its fresh or maybe i need to put crosses lower (i just experimented with equal this time.)Spin is great on strokes btw.Regards and thanks in advance for replay.
 

galapagos

Hall of Fame
Hi Galapagos,nice to read your review and suggestions.I also have reel and plays razor code 18 on RS305 at 23/23 at the moment,its perfect string from the field cant argue on anything.One little issue when its freshly strung at this tension,first session it little hard to find exactly rotations on second serve sometimes(took me around 40 minutes to find depth and confidence)but its just better and better later.What is your oppinion or this,is that because of 18 gauge stringbed liveness maybe or does shoulder needs more rotations when its fresh or maybe i need to put crosses lower (i just experimented with equal this time.)Spin is great on strokes btw.Regards and thanks in advance for replay.
I think it's very personal from player to player and from gear to gear. At least what you are describing sounds like a personal rather than gear related.

I also had some "sweet spots" in different strings regarding their time in my frames. Luxilon Original was the one that played better and better for me :) You could try lowering tensions. Or try shaped string.
Being a tennis player is also about adapting so there might be some things to consider, including RHS and proper swing path, contact point..well it could be everything really :)
Learning your gear and setup is a part of every player's journey :)
 

galapagos

Hall of Fame
it's crazy how the level of game jumps from junior pro to senior pro, then from 1000 atp to 500 atp -> 250 -> top 100 -> top 50 -> top 20 -> top 10 -> top 3? and then another "hidden" level -> multiple grand slam winners which is kinda whole different level compared to ranking.

Djokovic is outplaying those top guns like if they were academy players xd inspiring but also very tough mentally for all those aspiring champions. How to reach this level and if they are even able to do this ? How much they have to sacrifice to reach this level and stay mentally hungry and excited about the game rather than exhausted and depressed?
 

Wheelz

Hall of Fame
it's crazy how the level of game jumps from junior pro to senior pro, then from 1000 atp to 500 atp -> 250 -> top 100 -> top 50 -> top 20 -> top 10 -> top 3? and then another "hidden" level -> multiple grand slam winners which is kinda whole different level compared to ranking.

Djokovic is outplaying those top guns like if they were academy players xd inspiring but also very tough mentally for all those aspiring champions. How to reach this level and if they are even able to do this ? How much they have to sacrifice to reach this level and stay mentally hungry and excited about the game rather than exhausted and depressed?
His brain is all wired the right way after all those years of top experience. Everything is more automatic and subconscious probably even compared to young Djoko. I'm 40, I mostly played ice hockey (until junior hockey) and sometimes I feel my IQ is much better today even if I lost skills because i play a fraction of what I used to. Just moving into right spots without thinking about it, guessing where the play will go. There are so many patterns that can happen, at one point its like your brain knows what to do.

but hey my body hurts... every morning (but I play hockey or tennis every day). How does he handle that hehe.
 

galapagos

Hall of Fame
His brain is all wired the right way after all those years of top experience. Everything is more automatic and subconscious probably even compared to young Djoko. I'm 40, I mostly played ice hockey (until junior hockey) and sometimes I feel my IQ is much better today even if I lost skills because i play a fraction of what I used to. Just moving into right spots without thinking about it, guessing where the play will go. There are so many patterns that can happen, at one point its like your brain knows what to do.

but hey my body hurts... every morning (but I play hockey or tennis every day). How does he handle that hehe.
ye, I get you and it makes sense. My peak strikes might got worse but I rarely make mistakes now and my results actually improved. I would kick to the ground my younger version :)
 

ChrisJR3264

Hall of Fame
@galapagos I'll ask you since you're the master of racket reviews and a fan of the 18x19 - both T-Fight 305 ISO and RS versions. Which one did you like the most?

I own two of each and flip back and forth pending on which string is fresh. I sometimes enjoy that crispier feeling racket over the more flexier one. However both feel great and play well (with weight added in the handle of course)
 

galapagos

Hall of Fame
@galapagos I'll ask you since you're the master of racket reviews and a fan of the 18x19 - both T-Fight 305 ISO and RS versions. Which one did you like the most?

I own two of each and flip back and forth pending on which string is fresh. I sometimes enjoy that crispier feeling racket over the more flexier one. However both feel great and play well (with weight added in the handle of course)
I prefer ISO after my mods. It's more forgiving, probably slightly more power, sweet spot seems to be bigger and I feel more connected to the ball. The only potential drawback I can see for others is that the ISO is more demanding to swing. After some customizations I feel like it's as easy as RS. I can feel that different weight distribution ISO having higher TW. So the potential problem is that it feels kinda slow to swing but not head heavy and it doesn't have crazy plow through you would expect from such a SW and balance point.
That's why surprisingly I think that many one-handers might enjoy this frame.
As I felt the frame heavy and stable enough for my game I was looking only for the easier whip through contact point.
Adding mass to the bottom of the handle helped me to the point where I even think about adding some tiny tiny bit of lead to the head for that plow through sensation. But again... I might start with taking off some lead from the handle and let it work with the balance/weight first rather than bumping higher the SW.

say hello on IG ! (y) @dandan.tennis
 

ChrisJR3264

Hall of Fame
I prefer ISO after my mods. It's more forgiving, probably slightly more power, sweet spot seems to be bigger and I feel more connected to the ball. The only potential drawback I can see for others is that the ISO is more demanding to swing. After some customizations I feel like it's as easy as RS. I can feel that different weight distribution ISO having higher TW. So the potential problem is that it feels kinda slow to swing but not head heavy and it doesn't have crazy plow through you would expect from such a SW and balance point.
That's why surprisingly I think that many one-handers might enjoy this frame.
As I felt the frame heavy and stable enough for my game I was looking only for the easier whip through contact point.
Adding mass to the bottom of the handle helped me to the point where I even think about adding some tiny tiny bit of lead to the head for that plow through sensation. But again... I might start with taking off some lead from the handle and let it work with the balance/weight first rather than bumping higher the SW.

say hello on IG ! (y) @dandan.tennis

I feel like - yes for both frames weight is needed. The one issue I had (originally had 3 isos but had to return one) was a QC grip size issue. Bought a grip 4 and measured it and it came out to a 4 and 3/8 which was a real head scratcher so I gave it back to TW. Plus it was 2 PHL

I feel like I can interchange between the two between matches and still not notice a difference. I do enjoy the SW on both frames. I do think the SW is a tad under-spec on my one RS - did a home manual measurement of 326. The other three I measured 333 and 332.

I’m still flirting with the balance between 32. And 32.5.

The grip shape has me building it to a 1/2 instead of 3/8
 
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