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Review: Yasaka Phantom 009 PDF Print E-mail
Written by LawOCG   
Thursday, 18 October 2007
Yasaka Phantom 009 Review, by LawOCG

Source: Forum Thread:
http://forum.oneofakindtrading.com.au/viewtopic.php?t=175

Heres a review for the 009.

Physical Inspection

Out of the packet the Phantom 009 is of the highest quality. Everything from the pip-tops to the labeling has been manufactured to perfection. This LP is very unusual because of its tacky tops. The tops of the pips are smooth and tacky, you can literally pick up another racket, roller or anything else flat for that matter. The sides of the pips are also quite grippy. This combination of smooth tacky pips with grippy sides makes for a interesting rubber. The pips are aligned horizontally and are a tad shorter then full length long pips. Even though saying this, its definitely NOT a medium/medium long pip. Its just missing that little touch of length that would make it a full blown long pip. The pips are thin and soft and are willing to bend when pressed against with a light touch.

Spin reversal and LP effect

The phantom 009 quite different to most long pips. Against light spin balls the phantom can significantly produce its own spin like regular inverted or short pips but against Heavy spin its able to reverse the spin and give the traditional long pip effect. The control is excellent for a long pip rubber, the ball will almost never pop up against loops or chops. The tackiness of the pips provides excellent control at the expense of spin reversal. Even with this grip all the traditional long pip shots can be done easily. During my time testing the 009 its not quite easy to produce "wobble" or @#$@3 balls. Against side back or side top spin I was able to produce wobble through the scoop and block strokes. Other than that its effect is not that pronounced.

Blocking/Hitting

On the packet it specifies that this pip is attack orientated and can be used for fast attack and allround play. Usually packet blogs mean squat but in this case its quite true. The phantom is a medium paced LP with excellent dwell time. When blocking against loops a wide variety of returns can be produced depending on your shot choice. If you choose to leave the racket in front of the incoming ball hoping that it will return something funny..... nothings going to happen. The super grip of this LP cancels out the topspin from loops returning knuckle/dead/floaters back to your opponent.

However this isn't such a bad thing... due to the extra grip you can really speed up your blocks big time without loss of control. Punch blocks against loops produce excellent dead balls at high speed. If the timing is spot on against a high spin loop, the return will carry slight backspin.

Chop blocking against loops is excellent. The tacky pips provide you with extraordinary control. Almost all top spin balls at any speed can be chop blocked quite hard with high consistency. The return will carry alot of backspin usually causing your opponent to dump the ball in the net on the next shot.

Hitting is simply superb!! The 009 almost hits identically to a short pip. The angle doesn't have to be as open as with most long pips. You can easily hit more then 10 shots with no loss of control. There is a catch though, for every plus theres a minus. Fast and consistent hitting comes at the expense of spin reversal. The opponent will almost never dump the ball into the net since your shots will carry a slight degree of topspin.

Pushing/chopping at the table

This is where 009 has a very unique property. Pushing against backspin for most long pips is troublesome and hard to control. 009 differs from them all because of the grip. When pushing against heavy backspin balls the ball can be kept extremely low and will most likely be a knuckle ball with sometimes the rare occasion of slight topspin. Pushing against light backspin balls is superb. The resulting ball is extremely low and will contain HEAVY backspin. Yes you read right, against light backspin balls the 009 is able to produce its own spin along with the conflicting spin to produce a heavy chop for the opponent. This is due to the tacky pips.

Chopping Mid-distance/Long-distance

The 009 being rated as a attacking pip gave me the idea that it would fairly suck as a defensive rubber. This is not true at all to my suprise, When chopping against loops the resulting spin produced is extremely heavy, much heavier then say destroyer, 388D/D-1, Neptune, 1615, 837 ( I can only compare it to those as Ive used them all). The reason for the heavy backspin is because of the tackiness on the pips and the slight spin reversal from the LP. Its a very subjective matter when it comes to chopping because it depends on your natural style of chopping.

By saying this I mean the arm speed that you chop at. If your chop action is slow on contact. The ball wont carry much backspin but will provide you with great control. The bonus side of this is that variation can be produced rather easily.

If your a aggressive chopper that tries to impart maximum backspin on every ball. Then the 009 will allow you to do so with great control. The spin produced on chops is not to be underestimated. Its much more heavier then anything Ive tried before. The ever so mighty destroyer doesn't even come close in terms of the volume of backspin when it comes to chopping compared to the 009.

Overall as a chopping rubber its very subjective to the skill of the user. The 009 will allow you to almost do anything with your chops but it depends on what you can do yourself. Unlike other long pips that mask up crap shots, the 009 will do no such thing. Out of position chops, miss hits or wrongly timed chops will leave you vulnerable.

In a way it promotes a positive chopping game. As long as your not tentative and go for your shots the 009 is definitely worth a try.

Conclusion

Now that you've finally got to the end Very Happy I hope you found this review helpful. I would recommend this LP to allrounders. For close to the table players Dr N rubbers still reign supreme. For long distance choppers the 009 is excellent but quite different in the way that spin is varied. If your game is spin variation then 009 probably wont be as effective as some of the more deceptive pips out there, but if your goal is to chop to the point where the resulting ball weighs a tonne, give it a go!
Last Updated ( Friday, 19 October 2007 )
 
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