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My Top 5 Control Racquets

by TN

If you can generate your own power and want to place the ball on a dime, here are my top 5 control racquets that you can buy right now.

Lists are popular on the internet, so I have started writing some lists like my top 3 comfort strings, the best racquets for intermediate players, and so on. It is not always easy to rank racquets or give them a rating. What is a great racquet for one player, might not be good for someone else. Instead, I try to give as much detail as I can so that you can make an informed decision about what racquet to get. If you’re at a crossroads, check out my consultation service. But for now, let’s get into my top 5 control racquets at the moment.

My Top 5 Control Racquets

What is control when it comes to tennis racquets? It is when you feel you can place the ball with confidence. It tends to mean low-powered. But even low-powered racquet where you don’t feel connected to the ball can be difficult to control. I list racquets that are low-powered and offer great feedback to the player. This is what makes a great control-oriented racquet.

Not all nice control racquets will make it on this list. These are racquets that are available right now. There are obviously plenty of older racquets (that you can pick up used at a good price) which offer great control.

HEAD Pro Tour 2.0

The most hyped-up launch in a while was when HEAD and Tennis Warehouse re-introduced the HEAD Pro Tour 2.0. Almost 30 years later, it is still a great stick. No Twaron this time and made in China instead of Austria, but the performance is still there. Not the easiest racquet to use, but for accomplished players or players looking for pinpoint precision, this frame is great.

Read my HEAD Pro Tour 2.0 Review.

Wilson Blade 98 V7

This racquet comes in two string patterns, 16×19 and 18×20. They both offer great control and feel. The new Blade offers more flex than the predecessors and is excellent on volleys and touch shots. It is the most control-oriented Blade since the nBlade and will allow you to move your opponents from one corner to the other with ease.

Read my Wilson Blade 98 V7 Review.

Tecnifibre TF40

I had to include the TF40. It is perhaps the finest frame released last year for players looking for the middle ground between control and power. The 18×20 pattern is more spin-friendly than most and despite the mid-60 RA stiffness, the stringbed is still plush. If you like the Pure Strike but want more comfort and control, the TF40 is your best friend. It comes in both 305 and 315g weight.

Read my Tecnifibre TF40 Review

Dunlop CX 200 Tour

Another racquet that comes in two string patterns, 16×19 and 18×20. They are both controlled 95 sq inch racquets with a beautiful blend of crisp precision. This is not a “wet noodle”, but a more modern take on the control racquet. I loved both patterns, so if you want a higher launch angle, go for the 16×19 and if you want to be 100% in charge, go for the 18×20 pattern.

Read my Dunlop CX 200 Tour 18×20 Review
Read my Dunlop CX 200 Tour 16×19 Review

Prince Phantom 100P

This has become one of my favorite racquets right now. The update to the 100P is easier to swing and still more stable than the predecessor. A thin beam, 100 sq inch, 16×18 racquet sounds like a weird thing to some but works beautifully in the 100P. If you want EVEN more control, you can go for the Phantom 97P, but I find this one to be a bit easier to use.

Read my Prince Phantom 100P Review

Honorable mentions

Listing five control racquets are difficult, but I went for 5 racquets that have made an impact on my game. I want to mention a few other ones too. The new HEAD Graphene 360+ Prestige MP is the best Prestige in years. It offers great feel and control and has a bigger sweet spot thanks to the 98 sq inch head size. HEAD has also created the impressive HEAD Gravity Pro, which is another frame I enjoy a lot.

Smaller brands can make great frames. I want to give shoutouts to Angell for the beautiful K7 Lime. Constructed with aramid it takes connected dampening and flex to a new level.

Dahcor is another brand that surprised me with the Dahcor K97S. It is a bit like a Wilson Pro Staff, but with better feel and comfort. And the Tennisnerd paint job looks sweet too!

TenX Pro also deserves a mention for its 20 mm beam and 27.5-inch length Xcalibre. They kind of came from “nowhere” and introduced a great-playing frame.

And how could I forget? I was very impressed with the Yonex VCORE Pro 97 HD. It probably deserves to be in the top 5. Great feel, comfort, and control and the best frame from Yonex in years.

What is your favorite control racquet?

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1 comment

Tennis Lion May 28, 2020 - 21:03

I would say the number one control racket out there must be the Wilson Ultra Tour, with its 97 sqinch head and 18×20 pattern. I have never played with a frame that felt so easy to direct shots with. Looking forward to see if anything changes with the Ultra Pro.

Overall when it comes to control, I wonder if it’s not just the density of the stringbed, but also the regularity of the string spacing? I noticed many stringbeds have a dense centre, but then spreadout at the edges, presumably to increase power on miss-hits. However, this probably decreases directional stability off-centre. Whereas, some other frames have a completely equal spacing of strings all over the string-bed (like the Phantom 100P perhaps?), and I find them to be more controlled even if they are fairly open patterns.


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