Racquet Review: Yonex VCore Xi 98

by: Justin diFeliciantonio | February 24, 2013

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MSRP: $240
Head Size: 98 sq. in.
Length: 27 in.
Weight: 11.3 oz.
Balance: 6 pts. HL
Beam Width: 22-21mm
String Pattern: 16x20
Construction: Firm
Swingweight: 309
Ideal Swing: Long
NTRP: 4.0+

The Pitch
Racquet of choice for Juan Monaco, the Yonex VCore Xi 98 features Micro Core, a high-density urethane foam that’s injected into the hoop of the frame. According to Yonex, Micro Core dampens vibrations and increases the stability of the racquet’s face, especially on off-center hits, resulting in greater power and control. True to form, the Xi 98 also retains Yonex’s trademark Isometric construction, a square head shape that cuts down on the space found outside the sweet spot in more conventional, round hoops.

How It Tested
The VCore Xi 98 isn’t built exclusively for a baseline or net-rushing specialist; rather, with its fast feel, modest beam width and head-light balance, it’s built for all-around playability. Indeed, advanced-level playtesters reported that the Xi felt equally adept driving the ball through the court at net as it did rolling balls deep in the backcourt. “It was versatile and solid,” said a 4.0 playtester. “You could do a little bit of everything.” Many also claimed that the sweet spot was generous for a 98 sq. in. head, and that the frame felt clean on impact, producing only enough vibrations for good feel. Spin generation was good but not exceptional, lending the stick more to those who win with well-placed forcing shots rather than Rafa-like topspin.

Bottom Line
A versatile stick for high-intermediate and advanced-level players with all-court games.

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