If you’re looking for information on what tennis racquets and gear the ATP pro’s really use, you’ve come to the right place. It’s rarely what you think it is.
The tennis racquet industry needs to sell racquets to survive and the best way to sell a racquet is for a popular and successful player to use it. But since most professionals are so meticulous about their gear and the racquet is so important, they wouldn’t want to change racquets willy nilly. Instead they use the racquet model they’re used to and the company paints it as a new model and the player “endorses” this line of racquets.
Sometimes it’s pretty close to what they’re actually using. For example, Rafael Nadal plays the first edition of the Babolat Aero Pro Drive, but has always been endorsing the latest line – right now that is the Babolat Pure Aero. They are quite similar however so it doesn’t feel like complete deception. It’s similar with Nick Kyrgios who is using the Yonex Xi 98, but is endorsing the latest model Yonex DR 98.
But then we have a guy like Andy Murray who is playing with a very flexible 20-year-old racquet (with a string pattern that was never available to the public) and has a true racquet face of 95 sq inches while he’s been endorsing the Head Radical line in its countless different iterations.
Same goes for Novak Djokovic who has been endorsing a 100 sq inch racquet, but is using a 95 sq inch model based on an old racquet. You can’t buy Novak Djokovic’s real racquet in stores, but that’s not saying that the racquet he endorses, the Head Graphene XT Touch Speed Pro is a bad racquet.
So this is just the name of the game. Most recreational players will do fine with a good retail racquet and need not worry about buying a pro stock racquet unless they really, really want to. And if you’re not happy with your current racquet setup or haven’t found one with the specs you like, remember that you can always customise the racquet to your liking.
I’ve written a good number of posts on what the ATP professionals really use and here is the list so far – please let me know if there is a player missing here and I’ll try to find out what he uses. I’ve also reviewed a lot of retail racquets and you can find a decent overview on this page and if you want to buy a new racquet – you’ll find a few decent guides here:
Racquet buying guides
Here is a great racquet buying guide to get you started.
What tennis racquet should I buy?
Top tennis racquets to buy right now
The Gear of the Year 2016
Tennis racquets for juniors
Tennis racquets for kids
ATP Professionals and their tennis racquets
Juan Martin Del Potro
Pablo Carrena Busta
Victor Estrella Burgos