If you are a fan of head heavy rackets and you like the Yonex brand but are a little bit confused as to which one may be right for you, then this is a video that may help you.
All we’re going to do today is look at the Astrox series of rackets, which are the head heavy versions of the rackets in their range.
And from this, we are not going to be talking about the alternate versions of each of these rackets, which are the the Tour, the Game and the Play. We are just focusing on the pro versions and what they all bring in terms of playability. And hopefully this will help you a little bit.
So first off, we have the wonderful Astrox 100ZZ.
This is massively popular amongst the professional players, both singles and doubles.
This is a brilliant all round racket. It’s got power. It has got great defensive capabilities. It’s quick around the net, so it’s got huge, huge benefits of using this racket. It is very, very stiff indeed, and as you can see, there’s racket, very little bend, and it kind of bends a little bit different. This is because this racket has a solid core shaft, which is the only one out the entire range of rackets.
So it flexes a little different than you will get from over rackets. Aside from that, the weight is in the head. Extremely stable, as you expect from all Yonex rackets. Super playable racket.
One of my favourite rackets. I love the head shape on this as well. Great for tension if you like to have yours strung at high tensions.
So overall, really good all round racket. It will deliver the power. It will deliver all that you require.
Next in line is the Astrox 99 pro.
Some of you may recall when this was launched, it was the racket of the former world number one Kento Momota and designed for him. So there are a few differences with this racket.
It replaced the original 99. So first of all, you see that the head shape is a little bit more round than previous. Again, top of the range stiff, but a little bit more flex there than we got out of the 100ZZ, and it’s a different kind of flex from where where it flexes.
This also had a brand new stringing pattern for Yonex, which brought together a very old traditional stringing pattern with the five double grommets at the top, plus an extra one, just another cross string below. So very different feel in terms of hitting.
This is very head heavy, very stiff, and as such is found a lot more favour with singles players than it has with doubles. Again, like the 100ZZ, it was available in a 3u G4 and 4u G5 in the UK. And I suspect that a lot more players would have selected the 4u G5, the G5 referring to the grip size being that bit smaller and the u referring to the actual weight of the racket.
Still popular racket available in two colourways. It had the white and black version which was called the White Tiger, and then this cherry red and black. Really really nice racket. While I talk about colourways, I should actually mention here a bit remiss of me, that the 100ZZ comes in this lovely navy blue colour with decals and also they have what they call the Kurenai version, which is almost like a wine red version of this as well.
Both versions still available as I record this video.
Let’s move on and we’ll talk about the Astrox 88D Pro.
You probably notice yet again, falling in favour with this design of a lot more rounded head compared to the original 88D Pro. For me, this is slightly less head heavy than the original, it is very playable.
I think that they’ve improved maneuverability of this frame considerably over the original maybe lost a little bit of the head weight here, so not quite as heavy on the top end but still a great offensive racket. But they’ve make it more maneuverable so it’s a lot better defensively as well. Great all rounder, super powerful,
very, very popular racket amongst the professional players.
One of the notable players who used this was Gideon of Indonesia, former world number one, and his partner, funnily enough used the older version, which was the 88S. As you can see, different colourways of the rackets.
So what is the difference between the two?
First of all, the stringing pattern from the 99 is also used on the Astrox 88S Pro.
The S Pro originally or the old 88S or skill as it was known, the head weight was a little bit more down here, so the racket was a little bit faster, but still had enough weight where the 88D tended to have the weight a little bit more the top end. And I suppose this is still true today that they are fairly similar in weight, but there is noticeable bit more headweight at the top of the racket in this one compared to the 88S Pro.
Again, both of these very, very popular amongst professional players and also league players, club players as well. So both again, stiff as you can see, probably not quite as stiff as the 99, but very much up there in terms of being a stiff frame with head weight to go with it.
Last but no means least is the revamped Astrox 77 Pro.
The original 77, which was the first of the Astrox series
I didn’t particularly get on with, I didn’t feel there was enough in that particular racket for it to stand out.
And I prefer the old Voltric series to it. However, now they’ve taken the technology that they’ve learned and used in the in the other rackets, and brought as a brand new 77 pro, and more in keeping shaped wise, not quite with the 100ZZ.
This is a far, far better racket than the original. I think this is probably one of the jewels in the Yonex crown of the Astrox series.
And again, this found a lot of favour with the professional players.
This has got a little bit more flex as you can see so a bit more medium flex, not quite the head weight you would have found in some of the others. So it’s a lot more forgiving of a racket, a lot more maneuverable, some would say. And certainly the flex has helped as well for the league players and county players that wanted something that wasn’t quite as stiff as some of the others that I’ve already mentioned in the range.
So the 77 Pro has become a very, very popular racket. I did mention that there are other versions of the racket being the Tour, the Game and the Play. Not all of them have all versions in the UK. I did recently see a Tour version of the 77 and it was a different stringing pattern to this one.
This is what I call the three loops pattern and with the the Tour version it was two loops, which means that the actual feel is going to be very different. Although the specs of the racket are supposed to be the same. That’s all I’m going to say about the various versions on this video. but I think this is this is one of the those rackets that is a lot more user friendly for all standards of player.
The extra flex here is bring it a lot more into the overheads for the player. That little bit less weight in the head means that the frame is a lot more maneuverable defensively and for some it means that they can get more power because it can bring the head through faster as well. So there you have it.
We have gone through the Astrox 77 Pro, the 88S Pro, the 88D Pro, the 99 Pro and the 100ZZ.
Hopefully you’ve found this video useful.
There will be a lot more coming in terms of rackets in the future and some on tactics as well.