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Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review

by Jonas Eriksson
Dominic Thiem's Babolat Pure Strike

One of the most anticipated racquet launches in 2019 is the new Babolat Pure Strike. The Pure Strike Team and 100 have already been revealed and my good tennis friend and racquet nerd Henrik Wallensten has reviewed one of them. Here is his Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review.

As most of you could see during the French Open, Austrian Dominic Thiem was using a new paint on his Pure Strike racquet and a differently shaped top-bumper. About the same time, Babolat was releasing the new Strike-series with some new, hot graphics. But, does it play any different compared to the old version? Well, the only way to find out is to try it on the court! We got a chance to try the first version that is available for a test, so here is my Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review.

In the current era of racquet-releases, the 100 square-inch head shape is facing hard competition. It mainly comes from Wilson with the Clash 100/100 tour and HEAD with their new racquet line (the name will be revealed mid-July, my Prototype review of this line can be found here – JE).  The Pure Strike is not most known for its 100 sq inch version, but more so of the 98 version with 16/19 and 18/20 string pattern and these versions will be available for a test later this summer. (Dominic Thiem is using a 98 sq inch Pure Strike with 18×20 string pattern – JE)

Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review – Specs and tech

Dominic Thiem's Babolat Pure StrikeThe Pure Strike 100 has a 21/23/21 mm beam and an open and aggressive 16/19 string pattern. It has a 300-gram weight and a 320 mm balance. I feel that the grip shape on the Strike is a little bit different in feel compared to for example the Pure Aero. Strike almost has a little bit of the old Head TK57/TK82 rectangular shape and the Pure Aero has a rounded shape that is more like the shape that generally is to be found on Prince/Wilson frames. The handle is also pretty short on the Strike so you have to wrap the overgrip up and over the handle to cover both hands.

I first strung the frame with RPM Blast at 20 kilos and the first shots with the racquet were very solid and comfortable but also hard to control. The stiff RA of 72 gives this frame a huge portion of power and spin so it must be strung much tighter. When I use the Wilson Clash 100 Tour, a 20-kilo string job works very well, but in the new Pure Strike I would not go below 23 kilos to get the feel and control I would need. Second string job was 23 kilos and that was just perfect!

Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review

A stiffness rating of 72 in a fairly thin frame would probably scare away a lot of players but I don’t know how Babolat has succeeded to make such a stiff frame as comfortable as they have. There is absolutely no discomfort whatsoever. A very solid feel all over the hitting surface.

Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review – How does it play?

Babolat Pure Strike 100 2019 Racquet Review

One thing to consider, if you feel like you don’t have enough control in a Pure Drive or Pure Aero – give the Strike 100 a go! It gives almost the same power and spin as these two frames but in a more controlled package. The racquet is very easy to use and the sweet spot is generous so weaker players with shorter, compact strokes will have a good result with this frame.

The hitting-partner I played with when testing the new Strike 100 is using the 2017 Strike 98 and he was totally blown away when he got the chance to try the 2019 Strike 100. He instantly said it felt much more solid than the 98 2017 version and asked when he could buy this frame (in August – JE).

“A totally new world” was his exact words on the new Pure Strike 100 and it will be REALLY interesting to try the 98 version. When Babolat was giving out the Project One 7 frames I got one that I later customized with lead, leather, and silicone and that played beautifully. The semi-harsh feel of 2017 Pure Strike was gone with the dampening feel of silicone, but I presume the 2019 version of the 98 will feel much more solid when judging by the feel of the 100 version.

Tennis nerds have a lot of fun racquets to try this summer!

If you buy a racquet from our friends at All Things Tennis, you will get 5% off and a free string upgrade if you use the code: TENNISNERD at checkout.

Pics: Babolat

Thanks Henrik for the review! There sure are a lot of interesting racquets coming out this year. Are you interested to try the new Pure Strike? I hope I will get my demo in a week or two. It is yet another racquet that got lost on its way to Malta…

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Annette June 23, 2019 - 17:13

Another horrible hollow stiff racquet.
No control and not arm friendly. Bad frame. And the 98 head size will be the same. Thiem don’t play and will never play a stiff frame with poly at 25 kg !
Another paintjob for Do !

David S June 23, 2019 - 18:09

Wow the Babolat Marketing Department reviewing one of their own racquets.

Tennisnerd June 24, 2019 - 09:34

Haha, well Henrik is not a part of the Babolat marketing department, but he really liked the racquet it seems. I am still waiting for mine and will update with my take on it as well later on.

Henrik W June 24, 2019 - 20:22

Annette: what string and tension did you try the new 2019 pure strike 100 with? Would be interesting to hear as your experience is so far away from what me and my hitting partner experienced.

David S: Wow! That would really have been something, to get the honor of working for Babolat! That is not something I do however, I sell Audi cars during the days. The experience me and my hitting partner had with this frame was really excellent though. Feels much better than the last version. My current racket is the clash 100 tour with a leather grip and that is what I compared the strike 100 with primarily

Jean June 26, 2019 - 21:28

Afaik, Thiem used to play with the original 18×20 Pure Strike 98, which ime, is a stiff and uncomfortable frame. I could really feel the higher frequency vibrations through the handle. The tour version was a blast though, as it matched the stiffness with equal power.

Kevin June 28, 2019 - 00:27

Hello Jonas and Henrik,

What specifically do you expect to be different, bad and good, between the 2017 98 16×19 Pure Strike and the 2019 98 16×19 Pure strike, especially with the increase in stiffness rating. Henrik mentioned that he had to increase the tension for the 2019 100 model. Would you expect the 98 model to require a higher stringing tension also?

Tennisnerd July 3, 2019 - 11:46

Hi Kevin,
I will let Henrik answer this since I haven’t tested the racquet myself yet. Still waiting for it.

Cheers / Jonas

Andrei July 3, 2019 - 10:00

Already sold my PureStrike 98 from 2017. I liked it, was a good racquet, but sometimes it vibrated a lot and felt some pain in left hand index finger knuckle when I hit the two-hander BH (probably because of a mishit, when I wasn’t catching the ball in the sweet spot).
Can’t wait to hear your opinion on all the models when they come out, now that you work for Babolat :P .

Tennisnerd July 3, 2019 - 11:45

Yeah, I had similar issues with vibrations from the PS 98 2017. I haven’t tested the new Pure Strike myself, but really curious to do so. Hope it arrives soon. Cheers / Jonas

Josh (Kazuma-desu) July 7, 2019 - 14:54

Hello all,

I use the PS 17 98 16×19 and I love it. For the first time ever I am going to pre order a racquet. My question is, is the official release date the 8th or the 24th of Aug? Also, I just tried a new string, Volkl V-Square. Strung it at 53 and it is so soft and comfortable for a poly. Too much power so I am going to string it at 56 next. For me, goes super well with the PS17. Just a suggestion. Watch out for the power level though.

Tennisnerd August 7, 2019 - 11:23

Hi Josh,
The Volkl V-Square I have heard good things about but not been able to try yet.

The release date of the new Pure Strike 98 in the U.S will be on August 22nd.

Regards / Jonas

PS. If you feel like my advice is really useful, please consider becoming a patron for $2 at patreon.com/tennisnerd and get exclusive content every week. DS.

Tim April 4, 2020 - 13:17

Hi, what string and tension do you recommend for the 2017 .Babolat Ps. I’m a male, 61 years old, level 3 club player. Thanks

Tennisnerd April 6, 2020 - 08:04

Hi Tim,
It depends on what you need. If you are looking for comfort and power – go for HEAD Velocity MLT at 52 lbs.

If you want a bit more control, but still decent comfort – go for Solinco Tour Bite Soft at 51 lbs.

Even more control: Babolat Pure Strike Power at 52 lbs.

Regards / J


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