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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Back from a holiday trip

Resuming play this week.

Happy new year to everybody...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Yonex SHB91 men shoe review

Technology: Ergo Shape, Round Sole, Power cushion, Hexagrip sole, Double russell mesh, Mslite, Power Graphite Lite

First impression: This shoe is silver and green in color, seems very futuristic with a black 'Y' sign near the ankle area. This is the shoe, Peter Gade of Denmark wears on tournaments. Unfortunately this shoe is discontinued by Yonex.

The shoes looks very similar to the older SHB90M in terms of shape and fit

Fit: The shoe fits well enough, with no break-in period needed. Size fits as indicated and feels comfortable. The shoes is neither too low nor too high off the ground and is well cushioned.

Game time: The ventilation is very good. The shoe is very light on the feet and 'standing on the balls of the feet' felt comfortable and explosive first step is easy to achieve. Landing from a lunge or jumps felt comfortable with no excessive forced felt on the ankle and knee.

Pros: excellent cushioning and grip. Feels light and fast on the first step

Cons: none, possibly the inner cushioning on the toe felt uncomfortable (on the outside) especially on the pinky toe.

Fit: 9.5/10
ventilation: 9/10
feel: 9/10
Cushioning: 9/10
Durability: 8/10
movement/: 9.5/10
Grip: 9/10

Friday, December 10, 2010

Comparison between Ti-10 Mesh 2nd and 3rd Generation...

Round 1: The 2nd generation and 3rd generation in comparison.

Frame at 10 to 2 o'clock

Frame lateral view

Differences: 3rd generation (shaft) is made from Ultra high modulus graphite, whereas 2nd generation (shaft) is made from high modulus graphite.

The balance point: the 2nd generation felt slightly head heavier than 3rd generation
The flex: the 3rd generation felt slightly stiffer.

Other than that, the racquet is identical. Playability is the same.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Gosen 6900 vs. Victor SW35...

I decide to dissect the performance of these two racquets.
Victor Super Waves 35 (2010 model) vs Gosen Aermet 6900 (2009 model)
Both are roughly similar at 3U weight, G5 Gosen grip/G2 Victor grip with BG66 at 25lbs.

Why this comparison?
answer: Both are head-heavy balance and have a stiff flex

Round 1

The thickness of the frame if roughly similar. The Gosen 6900 the twin grommets at the 9 and 3 O'clock position making it more 'bumpy' at that position of the frame. String pattern is similar

The shaft are roughly similar, but SW 35 is slightly thinner. The flex of both are stiff and SW35 is somewhat stiffer. The balance point of Aermet 6900 is 290mm+/- whereas SW35 is 295mm +/-. The SW35 felt slightly head heavier.

Round 2
Aermet 6900 (2008 model)
Feel: 7/10
Control: 8.5/10
Power: 9/10
Defense: 8.5/10
Maneuverability: 9/10

Feel: 9/10
Control: 9/10
Power: 9.5/10
Defense: 6.5/10
Maneuverability: 7.5/10

Summary: I find that the feel of the Victor better than the Gosen, but 'feel' is very hard thing to describe. The Victor racquet has good feel owing to the stiffer shaft whereas the Gosen using fibration filter on the 3 and 9 O'clock position, somewhat dampen the 'feel'. Control wise roughly similar, but I feel that SW35 is better. Power wise marginally similar, not much to choose with slight edge to SW35. Defense I rated that Gosen is better and on court, the Gosen 6900 felt easier to defend owing to the lighter head and lighter weight, facilitating backhand defense. SW35 on the other hand felt slightly sluggish in defense and maneuverability compared to the Gosen 6900.

Conclusion: On court and in theory, the Gosen 6900 wins marginally over the SW35. I feel that the Gosen 6900 is more of an all-around racquet whereas the SW35 is a dedicated attacking racquet. The price is roughly the same for both racquets, so it boils down to performance. The SW35 wins hands down in terms of control, feel and power but Gosen 6900 is better at defense and maneuverability.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Pressure movement or shot making pressure?

This question is asked often.

Pressure movement

Pressure movement is more of pulling an opponent out of his or her base position. In Singles, this can be done by hitting to the four corners to 'jerk' the opponent around. This is fundamentally to exploit a slight 'decision-making' mistake of the opponent when he or she is recovering back to base position. This can even be used to exploit the opponent's footwork...and stamina over a long match. This a bread and butter tactic in singles and rarely used in advanced doubles game. Other words, people often used is 'control'. This implies that one can control the opponent's movement in the court. The key is to make the opponent, move 'late' to the shuttle, while you reach the shuttle 'earlier', which means the initiave belongs to you. Once your opponent is late, you can do a deceptive holds/flicks, drops, unreturnable tumbles, outright kill or even clear winners. That's why coaches often tell their students to take the shuttle early and at the highest point...this puts your opponent under a lot of pressure.

Shot making pressure

This is a fundamental concept in high level badminton. The bread and butter of doubles is the attacking play, meaning hitting the shuttle downwards. As a good doubles pair work togetther in an attacking position, e.g. the front/back position the net person covers the net while the partner pumps in smashes and fast drops. By smashing and even driving, you put your opponents under shot making pressure. This means they must return the shot quickly and safely so that the you and your partner cannot kill the shot. For example, in the defensive stance, it's difficult to continuous lift smashes cleanly to the baseline or blocks (to surprise opposing net player). The defender is under tremendous shot making pressure and can easily make mistakes. As for drives, another important tool in doubles is to sieze the initiative by forcing opponents to lift the shuttle. The mishit of a fast drive usually end up at the net. The drive or a fast push (in this example) can also be use as a pressure movement shot by placing it fast and low to an unprotected corner.
A slight mishit or a half-court lift can result from a well place drive or slower push. But basically a drive must be remembered as a shot to force opponent to lift the shuttle. GIFSoup