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Friday, November 27, 2009

Mizuno Tetra Cross 700 Review

Mizuno TC700 Review
Date : 28 November 2009
Racket Type : Mizuno Tetra Cross 700
Specs : 3UG4
Flex: Extra Stiff
Balance: 290mm
Strings: Yonex BG66 Tension: 25lbs , 2 Piece Stringing
Grip: Karakal Super PU + Toalson overgrip
Technology : Isometric/oval frame, Carbon Nanotube, Tetra-Axial, Graphite-Aramid composite

First Impression: Initially , I thought that this color is a bit 'old' and traditional; comprising of grey, green and flanked by beige at 3/9 o'clock. The racquet looks unassuming but have a rather classical hybrid kind of look. For the first time I handle it, the racket feels even balance rather than headheavy. Frame shape is rather oval but is between isometric and oval. The 'T-joint' is rather thick and the flex is rather stiff.

Warm Ups: The racket indeed feels really solid. Still getting used to the timing since the shape of the frame is semi oval. But as usual, I start off with baseline to baseline shots. Clears are good, feels like a Yonex NS9000X in terms of stiffness. Racket head is stable and well balanced but I would say rather unforgiving owing to the (oval frame) smaller hitting area. Reaction time is moderately fast and the driving is ok. The racquet is stable in cutting thru the air and feels a bit 'heavy' after continous multiple overhead strokes.

Game Time: I like the feel of serving low using this racket. Flick serve is good as well. Net play is good and control is satisfactory. When comes to time reaction, I would say that this racket is adequate. Above average defense since the racquet is not that head heavy. Smashes and clears are excellent with this racquet as the extra stiffness and semi-oval shape (focusing the repulsion of the strings) are where the power comes from. Control is on par with a singles Yonex racquet like AT900P/AT700. The stiffness of the shaft plus the moderately heavy head gave this racquet very good accuracy when placing shuttles to the 4 corners of the court. However, this racquet is not as maneuverable/aerodynamic as the best headlight racquet due to the thick T-joint/thick shaft. Driving is average with this racquet.

Conclusion: The racquet is not beginner friendly as its frame is semi-oval giving a small sweetspot. I’m satisfied with it and how its made. It's a pretty unique racquet combining smaller sweetspot with an extra stiff shaft which result in excellent control, power and feel. On the plus side, it's moderately head heavy with above average handling.

Feel: 9/10
Control: 9/10
Power: 9/10
Defense: 7/10
Maneuverability: 7/10

Excellent power, control and feeling, the ideal parameters of a great singles racquet.

Price, rarity and perhaps small sweetspot. Also not the best doubles racquet owing to lower maneuverability and defence

Suitability: Intermediate/Advance attacking players. More of a singles racquet or a baseline smasher's weapon in doubles. Not suitable for beginners or weaker players

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