Murray testing other Head racquets

Blahovic

Semi-Pro
A new racquet isn't going to regrow Murray's hip. Any benefits from a racquet change would be minimal. Lots of players play very aggressive with thin-beamed control racquets and Murray is a 6'3 tank, so I don't see why he needs power from the racquet per se. It's not a Federer situation where he has an obvious problem with hitting his backhand cleanly under pressure with a tiny head size.
 

McEncock

Semi-Pro
I agree @tomkowy : Imo the issue whith his lack of movement speed, is his 400ish swingweight monster.
If he wants to hit with someting as powerfull and stable yet more manuverable than his 400sw 16x19 pt57a2, he def need to switch to something bigger/easier
Extended extreme tour with austrian layup brought to 360 sw strung maybe?
(My dream racquet xD)
 
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Antónis

Professional
Federer's changing to a bigger racquet had very little to do with miss-hitting. put a 90 sq.i racquet over a 97 sq.i. and a ball next to the 90 sq.i frame, you'll see that a miss-hit on a 90 is still a miss-hit on a 98, or a 100. Besides, he still miss-hits a lot with the bigger racquet
It had to do with the extra power he needed, and gets from a stiffer (believing it's close to the retail version) and longer main central strings head racquet, that allows him get more depth and power from his backhand wing, thus holding better on baseline exchanges. That came with a price: his forehand lost that laser-sharp precision, and the slice lost venom. His second serve seemed to benefit from the extra power too.

Murray lost a step with age and the hip replacement. He probably wants to follow the shorter points route, Nadal did it, so did Roger. He has the weapons to do it, and he knows way more about tennis than any of us. lets see...
 

smalahove

Hall of Fame
Federer's changing to a bigger racquet had very little to do with miss-hitting. put a 90 sq.i racquet over a 97 sq.i. and a ball next to the 90 sq.i frame, you'll see that a miss-hit on a 90 is still a miss-hit on a 98, or a 100. Besides, he still miss-hits a lot with the bigger racquet
It had to do with the extra power he needed, and gets from a stiffer (believing it's close to the retail version) and longer main central strings head racquet, that allows him get more depth and power from his backhand wing, thus holding better on baseline exchanges. That came with a price: his forehand lost that laser-sharp precision, and the slice lost venom. His second serve seemed to benefit from the extra power too.

Murray lost a step with age and the hip replacement. He probably wants to follow the shorter points route, Nadal did it, so did Roger. He has the weapons to do it, and he knows way more about tennis than any of us. lets see...
I agree with your main point, but I would argue his change to a bigger racket is also in some part related to the miss-hits he used to have. With a 90 sq in you really have to go for your 1hbh when facing incoming, heavy top spin. There might not be an impressive visual difference between the PS90 and the RF97A, but in terms of the actual difference in size of the sweet zone and the twist weight, the RF97A allows Fed to swing less aggressively and still be competitive. Thus less shanks.

For Murray's part, his thbh would probably suffer from going to a bigger, less control oriented frame. He has to consider if a change benefits his FH and serve though.
 

Antónis

Professional
I agree with your main point, but I would argue his change to a bigger racket is also in some part related to the miss-hits he used to have. With a 90 sq in you really have to go for your 1hbh when facing incoming, heavy top spin. There might not be an impressive visual difference between the PS90 and the RF97A, but in terms of the actual difference in size of the sweet zone and the twist weight, the RF97A allows Fed to swing less aggressively and still be competitive. Thus less shanks.

For Murray's part, his thbh would probably suffer from going to a bigger, less control oriented frame. He has to consider if a change benefits his FH and serve though.
I'm not a Fed fan, but when I watch him playing I see he still shanks a lot.
I don't know if that's the case, I tend to shank less with a small head sized racquet (PS 85) than I do with the only 98 I own and play regularly with - Dunlop Aerogel 300 Tour - because I tend to close the face of the racquet to add more spin - I'm mostly a flat hitter, so the adding spin thing to tame the extra power makes me shank a bit more
The thing I see after he changed was that his ball got more zip when Rafa starts to target his BH, if Fed hits the ball clean. His ball landed short very often, and Rafa just killed it, hitting it clean the ball seems to have more weight to it, and makes it easier for him to go to the offensive
If he shanks, the result is the same with both frames (perhaps a bit better with the 90 because smaller racquets are more stable)
 

tomkowy

New User
I agree @tomkowy : Imo the issue whith his lack of movement speed, is his 400ish swingweight monster.
If he wants to hit with someting as powerfull and stable yet more manuverable than his 400sw 16x19 pt57a2, he def need to switch to something bigger/easier
His strokes are relatively slow (I mean racquet head speed), so I don’t think he will go lower than 370-380 SW. He won’t change his technique.

For Murray's part, his thbh would probably suffer from going to a bigger, less control oriented frame. He has to consider if a change benefits his FH and serve though.
My guess is opposite - on forehand there is more space generate power. On backhand it’s harder to generate power but easier to control the stroke with two hands. If his freedom to move is not perfect, he will need more power on backhand.
Still, he needs to nail the serves to win points early. I guess this will be a deciding factor.
 

brento1499

New User
Two full pages and nobody has mentioned Andy’s serve. To me it’s very clear that he desperately needs to serve bigger if he wants to extend his career. This is something that Djokovic seems to have picked up on that Murray and Nadal have not
 

veelium

New User
We not go the Djokovic route, extend the length a tiny bit but decrease the static weight a nudge to keep the swingweight similar. Worked well for the Djoker and would help with all his issues imo.
 

dr325i

G.O.A.T.
We not go the Djokovic route, extend the length a tiny bit but decrease the static weight a nudge to keep the swingweight similar. Worked well for the Djoker and would help with all his issues imo.
1) Andy is experimenting with different setups of his current racket
2) Novak's SW decreased from 370 to 360 kg*cm2 which is significant IMO.
 

ron schaap

Hall of Fame
Probably noticed or seen before but Murray was testing out the Extreme and Gravity today. Was watching him practice this evening at WSOpen. He said he was looking for a little more help (power) since he’s getting older but still playing with his older frames for the tournament. Didn’t do a lot in the way of testing but definitely seems like he feels he needs to find a new stick.
at his condition and age he needs all the extra power he can get.
 

jdx2112

Professional
Sadly, he had to switch back to ol' faithful to hit the target one minute later at the 18-min mark :(
Will be interesting what he's looking for. More power can come from a stiffer layup, but if he's looking for forgiveness/expanded sweet spot he's got to go up in head size. He currently plays with a 95" head. Maybe 98 is enough, not sure.
 

Hit 'em clean

Semi-Pro
That posted video is out of chronological order near the end and doesn't show him hitting him really hitting with either racquet. Not that he hit with them a lot, the Extreme was hardly at all and he definitely hit with the Gravity more. All the hitting with either was basically serves and return of serves (like 5-10min). And yes... he was not hitting nearly as well or as accurately with the Gravity or Extreme. He wasn't really finding the sweetspot on either stick and it will definitely be a big adjustment for him. If he does switch it won't be until he really has the off season to give it a go, of that much I'm sure.
 

jdx2112

Professional
That posted video is out of chronological order near the end and doesn't show him hitting him really hitting with either racquet. Not that he hit with them a lot, the Extreme was hardly at all and he definitely hit with the Gravity more. All the hitting with either was basically serves and return of serves (like 5-10min). And yes... he was not hitting nearly as well or as accurately with the Gravity or Extreme. He wasn't really finding the sweetspot on either stick and it will definitely be a big adjustment for him. If he does switch it won't be until he really has the off season to give it a go, of that much I'm sure.
I’m sure it would take some real time to go from 95 to 100 inch head
 

gutfeeling

Hall of Fame
That posted video is out of chronological order near the end and doesn't show him hitting him really hitting with either racquet. Not that he hit with them a lot, the Extreme was hardly at all and he definitely hit with the Gravity more. All the hitting with either was basically serves and return of serves (like 5-10min). And yes... he was not hitting nearly as well or as accurately with the Gravity or Extreme. He wasn't really finding the sweetspot on either stick and it will definitely be a big adjustment for him. If he does switch it won't be until he really has the off season to give it a go, of that much I'm sure.
Were you able to tell if he was hitting the thicker-beamed Extreme MP/Pro or the thinner-beamed Tour?
 

Hit 'em clean

Semi-Pro
I noticed at the the tournament that Head is not labeling a lot of pro racquets... no 'MP' or 'Pro', etc. They are just blank at the tip of the racquet where that designation would normally be. From what I saw Murray's test frames were the same. From the string pattern and to my eye I thought it might be the Tour 98sq in (certainly a pro stock). I don't think it was the 100.

Here are some hastily taken pics.

 
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vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
I noticed at the the tournament that Head is not labeling a lot of pro racquets... no 'MP' or 'Pro', etc. They are just blank at the tip of the racquet where that designation would normally be. From what I saw Murray's test frames were the same. From the string pattern and to my eye I thought it might be the Tour 98sq in (certainly a pro stock). I don't think it was the 100.

Here are some hastily taken pics.

Looks like the Tour to me. I have one.
 

newyorkstadium

Professional
Two full pages and nobody has mentioned Andy’s serve. To me it’s very clear that he desperately needs to serve bigger if he wants to extend his career. This is something that Djokovic seems to have picked up on that Murray and Nadal have not
He hit 11 aces in two hasty sets against Rubin, 11 against Hurcacz, and 14 against Gasquet. All in 2 set matches. 14 aces is the fourth highest in a two setter in his career. Don't know if he has already changed his racket, but that is a drastic improvement.
 
Maybe he knows he needs more free points now so he's going for more aces, at the risk of seeing his percentage of 1st serves going down (don't know, haven't checked the stats)
Just to say one number doesn't mean alot.
 

hurworld

Hall of Fame
I noticed at the the tournament that Head is not labeling a lot of pro racquets... no 'MP' or 'Pro', etc. They are just blank at the tip of the racquet where that designation would normally be. From what I saw Murray's test frames were the same. From the string pattern and to my eye I thought it might be the Tour 98sq in (certainly a pro stock). I don't think it was the 100.

Here are some hastily taken pics.

Surprised they didn't give him the Night pj. But I suppose the Day pj is still less blinding than the current Radical pj.
 

Hit 'em clean

Semi-Pro
He hit 11 aces in two hasty sets against Rubin, 11 against Hurcacz, and 14 against Gasquet. All in 2 set matches. 14 aces is the fourth highest in a two setter in his career. Don't know if he has already changed his racket, but that is a drastic improvement.
He definitely has not switched yet. Like I mentioned he was doing everything far better with his old standby then the test frames. I'm sure he definitely knows he has to be more offensive since he can't move/run like he used to. Murray's issues are just getting into the mindset of being more offensive since he's spent a whole career being more of a defensive style player. On days where you play well it's obviously easier to commit to, but it's those days where he's not 'feeling it' that he has to be willing to miss more balls than he's used to. From the practice I witnessed he was hitting great, but Murray's probably needs a something a little more forgiving because in a match losing a half step is the difference between hitting a ball that you can hurt your opponent with or ends up as a sitting duck winner for your opponent.

If he does ever switch... I'll be curious to see if they try to stick with the Radical paint job. My guess is if he does switch... it'll be the Gravity since he definitely seemed to prefer that over the Extreme. Don't know who they'd use to carry the torch on the Radical line today.
 

Tmano

Hall of Fame
I'm watching Murray now and i can't help it thinking that even an oversize could not help him if he does not change his mind set on that damn fore hand! It look like e is playing pickleball. :X3::confused:
 

dr325i

G.O.A.T.
He definitely has not switched yet. Like I mentioned he was doing everything far better with his old standby then the test frames. I'm sure he definitely knows he has to be more offensive since he can't move/run like he used to. Murray's issues are just getting into the mindset of being more offensive since he's spent a whole career being more of a defensive style player. On days where you play well it's obviously easier to commit to, but it's those days where he's not 'feeling it' that he has to be willing to miss more balls than he's used to. From the practice I witnessed he was hitting great, but Murray's probably needs a something a little more forgiving because in a match losing a half step is the difference between hitting a ball that you can hurt your opponent with or ends up as a sitting duck winner for your opponent.

If he does ever switch... I'll be curious to see if they try to stick with the Radical paint job. My guess is if he does switch... it'll be the Gravity since he definitely seemed to prefer that over the Extreme. Don't know who they'd use to carry the torch on the Radical line today.
Radical has plenty of faces on both, men’s and women’s side
 

moon shot

Hall of Fame
I'm watching Murray now and i can't help it thinking that even an oversize could not help him if he does not change his mind set on that damn fore hand! It look like e is playing pickleball. :X3::confused:
yep, any increase in the headsize, specifically the length of mains will move the sweetspot closer to his hand.
 

Arvid

Semi-Pro
Having watched his match against Tiafoe i have to say that i think his only complicating things by thinking about raquet change. He looked pretty much like he used to when he was really good, biggest problem seemed to be unforced errors. This is something that usually creeps in when you havent played that much or is low on confidense, so i think if hes body keeps up hel get back to a high level if he puts the time and work in to it, but changing raquets is not going to help...
 

Lavs

Hall of Fame
He needs Gravity Pro with 16x19.
Hi might want to borrow some from Barty just to try it out :)
 

Hagberg

New User
I think the Basilashvili recipe with extention to 27.5 - 28" is worth trying. If he is already used to high sw, the worst problem is already done.
I'm playing with my D.I.Y extended gravity pros and once accustomed to the sw, they are the perfect combo of comfort, control and brutal power for someone with a more old-school, slower swing technique.
 

Tmano

Hall of Fame
Having watched his match against Tiafoe i have to say that i think his only complicating things by thinking about raquet change. He looked pretty much like he used to when he was really good, biggest problem seemed to be unforced errors. This is something that usually creeps in when you havent played that much or is low on confidense, so i think if hes body keeps up hel get back to a high level if he puts the time and work in to it, but changing raquets is not going to help...
I think his only problem is the Forehand! that brings the whole game down for him.
His forehand does not dictated the play at all, and It's easily attackable from every side of the court.
To me it looks like that now that Murray feels like is hip is holding up well he can resume the same silly game he used to play before. the injury......wrong!!!!!
We had seemed him playing way more aggressively a while after the surgery to keep the point short but now it like he forgot all about it! Who is coaching Murray now?
 

jmacdaununder2

Hall of Fame
I think the Basilashvili recipe with extention to 27.5 - 28" is worth trying. If he is already used to high sw, the worst problem is already done.
I'm playing with my D.I.Y extended gravity pros and once accustomed to the sw, they are the perfect combo of comfort, control and brutal power for someone with a more old-school, slower swing technique.
Yet again I’m left wanting an extended version of a racquet that only comes in standard length retail; again is it really so problematic to give specialty stores a couple of hairpins to cut to length and grip as required for us mere mortals? Head’s pallet system would presumably lend itself to this to some degree?
 

Hagberg

New User
Yes, just go ahead and do it. That's what I did and it takes about two hours per racquet if done properly with epoxy and carbon or other structural material.
Only problem is that SW ends up pretty high with a retail stick so it's not realistic to go longer than 27.5.
I tried with 28 at first on both pro and tour variants but it was too much. I cut them down gradually until I could play successfully and ended up at 27.5.

Head really has no extended frames so - yes please. Give us a Gravity Pro+ 28". With the pallet system, anyone can make it shorter if they want to.
Or, why not 29" why we are at it. I tried the RZR Bubba just for fun and I have no problem at all playing with it after getting used to extended Gravity. Cutting down and weighting up is easy.
 
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jmacdaununder2

Hall of Fame
Yep, I extended a Prince TT95 to 28" and it was successful because the balance point was only 30.5cm unstrung. Unfortunately for DIY extenders the default balance point on new models - Blades for example - seems to be creeping upwards.
It's amazing how many pros and advanced players use a longbody versus how many companies are prepared to retail them. Babolat and in particular Yonex are exceptions - perhaps this is yet another reason why Yonex tennis racquets continue to increase in popularity. If it's financially viable for these two proactive companies, surely other companies - several of which more and more across the board are playing catch up - should take note? N.B. Please take note of Yonex's badminton racquet sales when assessing their global market ranking.
 

McLovin

Legend
Yet again I’m left wanting an extended version of a racquet that only comes in standard length retail; again is it really so problematic to give specialty stores a couple of hairpins to cut to length and grip as required for us mere mortals? Head’s pallet system would presumably lend itself to this to some degree?
Lol. I’ve been saying this for years. I tried extending the Extreme Tour with uncut pallets, but they kept cracking on me near the butt cap.

Someone here suggested the problem is the staples, and suggested using epoxy to attach the butt cap, so I’m giving it one more go. Will document and post here so if it works…
 

Gerco

Rookie
Lol. I’ve been saying this for years. I tried extending the Extreme Tour with uncut pallets, but they kept cracking on me near the butt cap.

Someone here suggested the problem is the staples, and suggested using epoxy to attach the butt cap, so I’m giving it one more go. Will document and post here so if it works…
I always use epoxy when want to match racquets that have like 1 or 2mm diference in lenght. I haven't tried extending like half an inch but I guess it could work. You'd have to use pretty much epoxy and start filling it from the butt cap to get to the desired lenght. Hope this helps.
 
Lol. I’ve been saying this for years. I tried extending the Extreme Tour with uncut pallets, but they kept cracking on me near the butt cap.

Someone here suggested the problem is the staples, and suggested using epoxy to attach the butt cap, so I’m giving it one more go. Will document and post here so if it works…
Put something inside to keep the pallets stable. I used balsa wood cut to fit. No cracking after several years, stapled butt cap normally.
 

Hagberg

New User
One has to extend the hairpin properly with carbon fiber (or something else) and epoxy. The pallet is made out of some extremely fragile plastic and often breaks by just removing it.
Once the hairpin is extended, one can attach the pallet with a good and thin double-sided tape. I use tape for the butt-cap too because staples tend to crack stuff.
Haven't had a problem so far.
 

McLovin

Legend
@Gerco, @nohandedbackhand, and @Hagberg...

I have a rectangular shaped wood dowel that Pacific provided me for backfilling the empty space when extending their frames. Unlike Head's pallets, their's are a 1-piece tube that slid over the hairpin, and seemed a bit more durable. The wood dowel wasn't a perfect fit, but a little sanding was all it took. I used silicone to fill in any empty space between the wood & pallet.

It felt fairly sturdy for a few games, but ultimately I think the staples compromised the structural integrity of the pallet. I'm hoping attaching the butt cap w/ epoxy does the trick...I really like the Extreme Tour.
 

Gerco

Rookie
@Gerco, @nohandedbackhand, and @Hagberg...

I have a rectangular shaped wood dowel that Pacific provided me for backfilling the empty space when extending their frames. Unlike Head's pallets, their's are a 1-piece tube that slid over the hairpin, and seemed a bit more durable. The wood dowel wasn't a perfect fit, but a little sanding was all it took. I used silicone to fill in any empty space between the wood & pallet.

It felt fairly sturdy for a few games, but ultimately I think the staples compromised the structural integrity of the pallet. I'm hoping attaching the butt cap w/ epoxy does the trick...I really like the Extreme Tour.
What I noticed is good with epoxy is that it fills the space under the hairpin and also acts as glue on the sides of the grip and the result is good to me.. Though I don´t put a LOT of stress on the racquet..
 

taylor15

Hall of Fame
Murray switches to PT113B in the off season and next year wins CYGS. All the racquetoholics will forever be justified.

edit: meant PT346.1 of course, making sure you guys are paying attention (thanks @dr325i )
 
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dr325i

G.O.A.T.
What does djokovic play with? You would think I would know with Alexh22 constantly complaining about it
AlexH22 is a clueless troll
Novak (and all pros using the same mold/layup) have switched to PT346.1 before Wimbledon 2019. The PT113x was discontinued then
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
No offence but if you really believe that Babolat story I’ve got a bridge to sell you; in any case 69 is still a long way from 65.
(Check the listed RA of some of the Babolat pro stocks - some of which are occasionally ’new old stock’ - for sale versus the retail versions.)
Eh, I've had my off the shelf Strikes drop in RA noticeably after quite a few restrings, and knowing Babolat's QC or lack thereof it wouldn't be surprising if they just grabbed a handful of off-spec frames out of the factory that were close to what they needed and just customised those as "pro stock". SW, balance, static weight given +/- 7 g would account for huge stat variation as far as I can tell, although I don't actually know their tolerance for RA.

I can accept that Babolat have pro stock frames to the extent that they take off-spec racquets off the production line that are close to what pros want as a platform frame for further customisation (because that's essentially what they are), but I don't think there are pro stock frames from them in the sense that I haven't seen any frankenstein frames ever being used by anyone on tour or available on your usual pro stock sites. Each time I've seen a thread about some Babolat player using a frame that isn't what it's PJed to look like, it ends up being another Babolat racquet that was at one point available at retail with a PJ, unlike Head or Wilson pro stock frames that sometimes crop up in moulds that were never made available from that brand in stores.
 
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