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Friday, June 24, 2016

Victor Bravesword 12 Review


Racquet Type: Victor Bravesword 12
Specs: 3UG5
Flex: medium flex
Balance: even balance
Strings: Yonex BG66
Tension: 25lbs, pre-stretched using Yonex ES5PROTECH
Grip: Yonex towel grip + cushion wrap + original grip
Technology: Nanotec, Inner waves, Shockless, Sword
Shuttles used: Yonex AS50


First Impression:


This racquet made famous by Lee Yong Dae and was/is the main racquet of choice by Lee Yong Dae and Yoo Yeon Seong. Hence, because of the Lee Yong Dae factor, I got to try it. It occupies the niche of a fast attacking doubles racquet. The colours and physical shape can be found in Victor website and reviews by other badminton reviewers.


Final comprehensive review


I played mostly doubles (and half court singles)


TOC (time on court) when making review:


total of 20 hours of game play.



Warm Ups:

Warming involves baseline to baseline forehand clears.

Clears are long and far owing to the aerodynamics of the racquet and how fast the racquet swings, you can literally hear the slicing sound of the racquet cutting through the air. If one word is to describe this racquet is like its namesake 'sharp'. Sharp like a sword's edge.


When contacted on the sweetspot, the force imparted on the shuttlecock can be felt acutely on your hands, i.e. the repulsion. Although, these could also be attributed to the strings you used, in my case the trusty Yonex BG66.


Drives are pretty fast owing to the 'aerodynamic' sword-like frame. The racquet is very manoeuvrable and hence very good for fast reaction.


The racquet shaft is normal size and felt that the stiffness is stiffer than Victor's medium flex rating. The kickpoint of the racquet, i.e. where it 'snaps' when whipped felt it's more towards the handle hence by swinging it fast, you can feel the whipping action. I need a high speed camera to confirm this though.



Game Time:

I won't go into detail each and every shot tried.

Generally since I am playing doubles, receiving of serve and serve are great as expected for a fast and aerodynamic racquet.

The even balance of the head of this racquet is apparent, as one can comfortably and easily whip the racquet to hit the shuttle comfortably with the backhand strokes for fast jabs.

Owing to the balance and aerodynamic frame, this racquet is very easy to handle, easy to go short handle grip to long handle grip.

Not much fatigue felt on my hands after an hour of game.


Front court: Aerodynamics of the racquet frame allow quick and fast reaction to perform netshots, netkills and crosscourt net shots. Racquet cuts very fast through the air. Excellent for backhand drive and jabs.


Midcourt: This racquet plays good in the mid court range area as it is both good in attack and jabs. The fast handling and aerodynamics allows fast reaction. As for drive shots, this racquet can rival the best headlight racquets, that I have used particularly Nanospeed 9900 and Ti-10. Backhand drive is excellent. A smash at midcourt is almost a guaranteed kill; especially when connected on the sweetspot.


Back court:

Basically smashes, drops and clears in backcourt. This racquet is great at the back, pumping smashes and full length clears. However, I feel a lack of momentum compared to headheavy racquets when doing the full swing, although the racquet swings thru very fast and awesome whipping action combine with fast swing.


Control is good, slicing (normal and reverse) and checked drops are precise, fast and relatively accurate. However if the pace is faster, control suffers owing mistiming issues (racquet swings too fast) and racquet may be too whippy.


Conclusion:

A fast swinging even balance racquet for great whipping power. Good for fast strokes, but control is sacrifice at a faster pace (owing to 'sharp' frame and timing issues: fast swing). Backhand handling is excellent bordering on legendary.


Feel: 8.5/10


Control: 8.5/10


Power: 9/10


Defence: 9.5/10


Maneuverability: 9.5/10


Pros: Maneuverability on the defence and very fast swing.


Cons: Control is not as consistent with my other racquet owing to timing issues (racquet swings too fast and whippy).


Suitability: intermediate/advanced players 3U and 4U

Player type: Fast racquet for defence and counter-attacking.

Footnote: this review was done as a hobby and as an interest to inform fellow badminton enthusiast. This is my personal opinion and in no form to promote this racquet.

Conflict of interest: None

Reference: Victor website (accessed @ 20/6/16)

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