Detailed Review – The New Wilson Shift 99 Pro
Key Specifications (unstrung)
- Head Size = 99 inch
- Weight = 315g
- Length = 27 inch
- String Pattern = 18x20
- Balance = 315mm
Intro - Our Play Testers
Joining Jordan for this playtest are two local club pros - Kyle and Finlay. Jordan is an ex professional tennis player who still regularly competes for his county and has a WTN of around 4.0. Kyle has been consistently competing on the ITF junior and men’s tours this year, and recently competed in the qualifying draw for the Boys Singles draw at Wimbledon. Finlay is currently a college tennis player and competes for Stirling University. All 3 of our play testers have an abundance of experience with performance level tennis and also with the tennis equipment world too.
Wilson’s newest addition to their performance tennis racket range is the Wilson Shift. Marketed with the promise of improving player consistency through increased topspin on every serve, forehand and backhand. Users of the Shift are promised increased net clearance, the ability to rip the ball to create better angles and more controllable power. Featuring new technology such as “ARC 3D” – a new feature which allows the racket to bend both vertically and laterally to produce easier power and spin.
Adding a new colourway to Wilson’s performance rackets line, the new Wilson Shifts have been unveiled to the public in a sleek pearlescent paint job. While some may not appreciate the design, we love the simple, yet elegant approach Wilson have taken on designing this paint job. Delicate touches of safety orange can be found in minute amounts around the frame, used sparingly enough to avoid becoming the centre of attention.
Playtest and Review
Although Jordan is a big fan of the cool coloured paintjob, he did find the racket slightly too heavy when swinging – although at 315 it is a higher weight than normal for him. With the tight 18x20 string pattern, Jordan felt he needed to swing pretty fast and hard to generate pace – noting that he prefers more open string patterns on his own rackets. A benefit of such a tight string pattern is the enhanced control – which Jordan loved as it allowed him to place the ball around the court. Overall, Jordan thinks this racket is aimed at pretty high-level players who want to benefit from a racket which controls the ball better – whilst not producing lots of spin. Designed for controlling baseliners who don’t play with lots of topspin.
Next up to review was Kyle, who agrees with the guys that the paintjob is clean! Control is key with the Shift – with Kyle stating that the racket will benefit players who strike smoothly and cleanly. He also felt that it sometimes generated some additional power – although this was not a consistent outcome for him. Compared to his own racket – the HEAD Extreme – Kyle felt that the Wilson Shift range is more flexible and produces a lot of control especially on flatter strokes.
Finally, Finlay noted that the new Shift is similar to a Wilson Ultra – except that it feels like it’s designed to produce far more control. As someone who loves to come forward and volley, Finlay loved that the Shift is easy to manoeuvre around the net despite its head size being slightly larger than he is accustomed to. Thinking about the shape of ball the racket produces, Finlay agrees that the 18x20 produced great control at the cost of creating spin. Therefore, he believes its best for flat hitting, experienced players who can handle the weight correctly, and hit smoothly with good rhythm.
Thanks for reading!
Check out our video review below!
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