Advanced beginner racket - Recommendation

kova

New User
Hi all

I started a tennis course recently and I am progressing pretty fast. I am currently using a Pacific racket x force (racket I get in training), weighing about 300g with grip size 3.
Since I am 185cm tall and have a big hand I think that bigger size of grip would suit me better. Following all those instructions/guides on how to choose the right grip size I would need atleast size 4 + overgrip.

That’s one of the reasons I want to buy my own racket, so that I’m using the right size of grip.

Recently at the Fall sale on TWH-Europe I wanted to buy Head Radical MicroGel MP (it would cost me around 85 eur with discount), but I decide to skip it for now. A few days ago I tried this model in size 4 (L4) and grip size of Microgel was same as Pacific that I am using which I did not expect. I contacted TWH support and they told me that there is not grip size 5 for this specific model so that microgel falls off.

As I mentioned before, I'm progressing pretty fast with tennis (especially when I compare myself to my group's progress) and I wouldn't want to take some super beginner racket now that I'll outgrow soon.

Do you have any racket models that you would recommend to me whether it is new or used one ?
I plan to invest up to 100 euros in the racket to begin with, and then I'll see how it goes later. I am looking at size 98-100 with steung weight ~310-320.
I looked at used and new ones. Models like Yonex Ezone 98-100, Tecnifibre t-fight XTC 315, Artengo Tr960, etc.
 
Last edited:

gold325

New User
Build your grip up to Size 4 using a heat shrink wrap (will add about 15 grams) and a new replacement grip. Anyway a newer more heavier racket would probably have the extra weight in the handle.

Add more weight using lead tape if you need to bring it upto 320-330 grams playing weight. Play for a couple months and after you improve demo some rackets and get something you love the feel of....

I started with Wilson Burn Team 270gm frame (cheapest new racket i could get) -> Wilson Prostaff Team 280gm frame -> 2 x Prince Phantom 100 310gm frame NOW.
 

cortado

Semi-Pro
VCore Pro 97 290g is roughly even balance when strung. But you could add leather grip (10g) and then overgrip (4-8g) which would bring the balance back more headlight and give you a total weight strung of around 320g which isn't too heavy for your level.
 

kova

New User
Thx for tips.I would rather buy right grip size then use 2 or more overgrips or heat shrink wrap.
It is much easier this way and finding size 4 of specific racket should not be a problem.

Related to weight, I think I can handle ~320g rackets
 

cortado

Semi-Pro
Thx for tips.I would rather buy right grip size then use 2 or more overgrips or heat shrink wrap.
It is much easier this way and finding size 4 of specific racket should not be a problem.

Related to weight, I think I can handle ~320g rackets
Yeah sorry, I wasn't suggesting adding extra grips, just that you could get size 4 grip and add weight at handle end as you improve.
 

Lorenn

Semi-Pro
Do you have any racket models that you would recommend to me whether it is new or used one ?
I plan to invest up to 100 euros in the racket to begin with, and then I'll see how it goes later. I am looking at size 98-100 with steung weight ~310-320.
I looked at used and new ones. Models like Yonex Ezone 98-100, Tecnifibre t-fight XTC 315, Artengo Tr960, etc.
From the Grip thread posted by 2nd Serve Ace..
Prince<wilson<head(82s)<yonex<babolat

Volkl and Technifibre are in between head/yone

Some say Wilson has increased average size slightly on new racquets. So if handle size is your goal and most seem to stop at 4 and you are not willing to size up the grip...Thick leather grip replacement might help enough. Basically modern players like slightly smaller handles. Five tends not to be an option anymore. Yonex or Babolat would likely be good straight from the factory. Volkl and Tecnifibre should be easy to size up with a thick overgrip. Head Wilson might need a leather upgrade and a thick overgrip. Princes might need two overgrips, but the Textreme Tour 100 is a lovely racquet.

As for Racquets. Head Speed Pro MP would be a good choice. Gravity MP as well. Extreme line is interesting. Currently using a Gravity Pro myself in Size 4. Of course most likely outside price range and maybe outside your specs. Maybe with a good sale. New Head Radical line looks interesting. Not until early next year/end of year.
 
Last edited:

golden chicken

Hall of Fame
I recently went to the pro shop to fondle some new rackets. I can confirm a L4 Babolat Pure Strike feels pretty close to my L5 Pro Staffs with overgrip.

I was also considering a Blade v7 and then building up the grip, hoping the balance point would end up around 6-7 points head light.

If you use an overgrip, one easy way to build up a grip is to use cardboard from a cereal box. One layer on each bevel will increase your grip one full size. You could add the cardboard on top of the existing grip and then wrap an overgrip over it and it would be easily removed later if you like.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
I think almost all the flagship brands have good models for advancing beginner:
Babolat Pure Drive and Pure Aero
Wilson Clash and Ultra
Head Extreme
Prince Beast
Yonex Ezone

Do you have arm issues. Do you seek power? Do you want more control in your game? Answer these questions and we can probably direct you a bit better.
 

Lorenn

Semi-Pro
Prince Beast
Do you have arm issues. Do you seek power? Do you want more control in your game? Answer these questions and we can probably direct you a bit better.
Sad thing is Prince Beast 98 would be close to perfect and was onsale since about September in the US...I think the non O3 is sold out. My guess on the answers, no arm problems and he is not sure yet about his play style, but likely loves power:)
 

kova

New User
No arm issues. I can generate power with my swing so I am looking for more control orianted racket then power.

Yonex ezone series is my go to model atm. Looking at 98, 100 and Ai 98.
I saw some used DR 98 which were sold in my area too.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Sad thing is Prince Beast 98 would be close to perfect and was onsale since about September in the US...I think the non O3 is sold out. My guess on the answers, no arm problems and he is not sure yet about his play style, but likely loves power:)
That was me in the beginning. But as I got better , I needed less power from the racket, started using stiffer poly strings to reign the power in and then got arm problems.

So I'd generally advise any beginner over 35 to seriously consider long term comfort first when getting a racket and then look at the power/control equation second.

With that in mind, I'd generally recommend Wilson Blades (control) or Clashes (power), Head Gravity (control) or Extreme (power), Yonex VCORE (control) or Ezone (power), Prince Tour (control) or Beast (power).

I'm not sure Babolat has got it right on the comfort level to suggest their frames in an older arm unless you've got great technique. They seem to be moving the right way but I'd be wary.
 

Lorenn

Semi-Pro
There is option for me to buy Yonex EZone AI 98 in mint condition for little less than 100 eur.
I think it is good option. What do you guys think ?
I think it is a great base. A little temperamental with strings but otherwise great. Not what I would normally pick for myself, but with your budget limits hard to do much better:)
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
There is option for me to buy Yonex EZone AI 98 in mint condition for little less than 100 eur.
I think it is good option. What do you guys think ?
I'd think you could get that model for cheaper since its a 6 year old frame. Good racket but I'd bargain down to 70 Euro for a 6 year old racket. I had some 2015 PD's I sold 2 years ago and only asked for 50 bucks CDN.
 

BlueB

Legend
There is option for me to buy Yonex EZone AI 98 in mint condition for little less than 100 eur.
I think it is good option. What do you guys think ?
Keep in mind, Yonex grip tends to feel one size bigger then other brands.

Also, about the leather grip some suggested, it also makes the grip go a bit smaller in size.
 
Last edited:

Villain

Semi-Pro
Keep in mind, Yonex grip tends to feel one size smaller then other brands.
Sorry @BlueB but that’s not my experience at all. A Yonex grip size 3 is clearly larger than a Head, Wilson, or Prince size 3. Babolat is probably close in size. I would agree completely with @2nd Serve Ace ’s scale quoted above. Yonex also has a very thin stock grip so you can make it even larger if you want to with just about any replacement grip.

The AI 98 is a great racquet BTW. I wouldn’t hesitate to jump on that @kova.
 

kova

New User
Keep in mind, Yonex grip tends to feel one size smaller then other brands.

Also, about the leather grip some suggested, it also makes the grip go a bit smaller in size.
I think it is other way around no?
Prince<wilson<head(82s)<yonex<babolat
 

BlueB

Legend
Sorry @BlueB but that’s not my experience at all. A Yonex grip size 3 is clearly larger than a Head, Wilson, or Prince size 3. Babolat is probably close in size. I would agree completely with @2nd Serve Ace ’s scale quoted above. Yonex also has a very thin stock grip so you can make it even larger if you want to with just about any replacement grip.

The AI 98 is a great racquet BTW. I wouldn’t hesitate to jump on that @kova.
Yes, other way round. Sorry, my bad.
Babolat definitely feels the largest.
 

kova

New User
I'd think you could get that model for cheaper since its a 6 year old frame. Good racket but I'd bargain down to 70 Euro for a 6 year old racket. I had some 2015 PD's I sold 2 years ago and only asked for 50 bucks CDN.
Yup, that was my only concern.
I tried to lower the price but seller didnt want.

Would there be any problems using mint condition racket which is 5 years old and never used?
 

Villain

Semi-Pro
Yup, that was my only concern.
I tried to lower the price but seller didnt want.

Would there be any problems using mint condition racket which is 5 years old and never used?
Mint condition AIs aren’t that common IME and that’s a pretty good price honestly. NOS racquets often go for above their original MSRP on the auction sites. Personally, I wouldn’t hesitate to buy a mint AI for less than 100 euro.
 
I wouldn't buy a racket with a size 5 grip if I were you. If you don't like it, you'll have a hard time selling it. It's not hard to make a grip larger.
 

kova

New User
Just for info I bought Ai 98.
Got it for pretty good price in mint condition with extra pack of wilson balls.

Under the handle there is number 5 but when you hold it, it is size 4. After I put overgrip it will be perfect.

Thx everyone for great tips and suggestions.
We will see how good this racket is after I use it for some time.
 
Top