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Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

by Tennisnerd
Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

The Wilson Blade 98 is one of the most popular racquets on the market. The blend between power, control and that slightly head-heavy feel is favored by both pros and amateurs. The 2019 update does not disappoint. Here is my Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review.

I have tested every Wilson Blade since the nBlade version and it has always been one of my favorite racquet lines on the market thanks to its close-to-perfect blend of abilities. I like to flatten out my shots and the 18×20 Blades have always reminded me of more traditional frames with a modern feel. The Blade V7 takes another step in the direction of old-school racquets when it comes to the flexible feel. Due to the new FeelFlex tech from Wilson (similar to FreeFlex from the Clash series), this racquet has a pocketing sensation reminiscent of some true racquet classics and is a lot more responsive than the muted Countervail version.

Buy the Wilson Blade V7 at TennisTopia.

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review – Specs and tech

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

Length: 27 inches / 69 cm
Head size: 98 sq inches / 632 sq cm
Weight: 329 grams / 11.6 oz with thick overgrip (305 grams / 10.7 oz unstrung listed weight)
Balance point: 12.8 in / 32,5 cm / 5 pts head light
Beamwidth: 21 mm throughout
String pattern: 16×19 (relatively tight)
Flex: Low 60s
Swingweight: 326.5 strung

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

This is how Wilson describes FeelFlex: An evolution of Clash’s revolutionary FreeFlex technology, FeelFlex produces a more connected-to-the-ball feel while better complementing the modern, vertical swing path. Proprietary carbon mapping strategically placed throughout the frame provides additional stability and flexibility through the swing.

Flex is suddenly a trend in the industry and that will please a lot of racquetholics and tennis nostalgics. Just look at the number of flexible player frames released recently: HEAD Gravity, Tecnifibre TF 40, Yonex VCORE Pro 97 HD and of course the ultra-flexy Angell K7 Lime. And now the new Blade is another step in the flex direction. It is definitely an interesting development, likely onset by the increasing elbow and wrist injuries in the sport (exacerbated by using stiff racquets and strings).

Check out the Wilson Blade 98 V7 on the official Wilson website.
Buy the Wilson Blade 98 V7 on Amazon. (For other Tennisnerd affiliates check here).

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review – How does it play?

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

I strung up the Wilson Blade 98 V7 16×19 (there is an 18×20 version as well, not sure it is needed since the 16×19 pattern is quite tight, to be honest) with Luxilon Alu Power at 21 kg / 48 lbs. I also tried it at 24 kg (52 lbs), but it felt a bit too low-powered at that tension. The lower tension opened up some more pocketing, which made the racquet feel a lot better. Especially on flatter shots, I felt the racquet “cupping” the ball. What I also noticed compared to previous editions of the Blade 98 was that the feel on drop shots and volleys were improved. I really felt a strong connection to the ball with this racquet.

This racquet is definitely an upgrade when it comes to the feel compared to the CV version, but the Countervail version is a bit more stable on slightly off-center shots. The crisper feel of the CV version will still appeal to a lot of players, especially since most players today are used to stiffer racquets with some kind of dampening. I think this racquet plays better than the CV that felt a bit board-like to me, but I am still not sure if I prefer the 2015 version or this one. I did play them side to side for this review and the 2015 Blade is crisper, gives you a bit more power and stability, while the V7 edition is more comfortable and slightly sweeter feeling.

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review – This one or the Clash 98?

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

I am often asked to compare racquets and so I played this one side to side with the Clash 98, as this is a natural decision to make if you are a Wilson guy and you’re looking for a 98 sq inch racquet. If you want to know more about the Clash and haven’t read my Clash 98 racquet review, I suggest you do that.

The Clash 98 offers even more flex than the Blade 98, so if you prefer a crisper feel, go with the Blade. The Clash 98 is still slightly more powerful thanks to the thicker beam. It is also more spin-friendly as the 16×19 pattern is more open than on the Blade 98. If you like to hit with spin from the baseline but prefer a smaller head size than 100 sq inches (for improved maneuverability for example), I think the Clash 98 is a natural choice. If you are a player that value directional control, feel, and like to move towards the net, I think the Blade edges the Clash. Two nice racquets, but for slightly different player types.

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review – Summary

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review

The new Wilson Blade 98 V7 is an improvement to me over the Countervail version. I am still not sure if it is my favorite Blade, both the kBlade and the 2015 Blade offer more power and stability. But this version is probably the sweetest feeling Blade yet with a plushness and pocketing that reminds me of the nBlade 98 and older classic racquets. I especially enjoyed picking up low balls and hitting volleys with this frame, but I do miss the crispness of the earlier Blades at times.

If you like to slice and dice, play creatively and value control and feel over power and spin – this Blade could be your new best friend. If you like to bash topspin balls from the baseline, there are other racquets that do that better. Another impressive racquet and I must say I like this new “flex direction” that the industry is moving towards.

Wilson Blade 98 V7 Racquet Review Video

What do you think of the new Wilson Blade 98 V7? Too much flex or just enough?

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12 comments

Lucas August 30, 2019 - 4:13 pm

Which are similar to this but most spin friendly?

Reply
Tennisnerd September 2, 2019 - 7:21 am

I would say Angell K7 Red is not too far away and very spin-friendly.

Reply
Simon August 30, 2019 - 9:08 pm

I played with the 2015 blade and it’s a great racquet, but it’s soft enough for me so I’d be worried the v7 is too soft.

How does v7 compare to the Prince tour 100 310 which is another racquet I’m interested in

Reply
Ken Harris August 31, 2019 - 1:12 am

I played with the 2015 version of the Blade 16 x 19 and purchased the v7 Blade 16 x 19. In my opinion, I find that the 2015 version played a little softer in light of the RA being a bit higher than the v7 version. I like the new version as it has a balance of control and power. I think newer version has little less power and more control than the 2015 version. The v7 plays a little crisp but maintains a comfortable feel.

In terms of comfort, I would say the older versions of the Volkl C10’s Pro from 07 and 08 were buttery comfortable where as the new Blade is a little crisp with modern comfort feel.

Reply
Luciano Eduardo Libardi August 31, 2019 - 11:14 am

your perception when compared to the Tecnifibre 305?

Reply
Tennisnerd September 2, 2019 - 7:19 am

They are similar in swing weight. The Tec feels a bit more stable, but the Wilson offers a bit better feel and touch. Tough choice!

Reply
Miguel Pessanha September 3, 2019 - 9:11 am

Is the 16*19 still your pattern of choice for the Blades?

Reply
Tennisnerd September 5, 2019 - 6:39 am

Yeah, I don’t think you need to go tighter as the 16×19 is pretty tight anyway.

Reply
Nate September 9, 2019 - 12:31 pm

I’m with Simon. I would really like to hear your thoughts on the prince TTour 310 and the Blade V7. Specs are close. I really need to be able to swing both but would be nice to see what your thoughts are on these two sticks.
Thanks

Reply
VAMOS October 28, 2019 - 9:55 pm

I tried the new Blade V7 and, in my opinion, it just doesn’t have the same plow through or stability as the previous CV Blade.

It felt more comfortable than the last one, but it just couldn’t handle pace as well.

Not sure why they didn’t just keep the more head heavy swing weight of the last Blade??

Reply
Tennisnerd October 29, 2019 - 1:54 pm

I don’t think it is the balance of the racquet, but the softer layup that might make it feel less stable to some.

Reply
Hugo Costa November 14, 2019 - 10:03 am

Blade v7 18/20 or 16/19 VS Gravity Tour?

Reply

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