If there’s a man who loves the promise of modern maneuverability combined with classic control, then that man is me! Luckily, that’s exactly what the Prince Textreme Tour 100P claims to give you, and I thought I’d be the one to find out if it lives up to its promise.

On paper, the Prince Textreme Tour 100P is very similar to my Babolat Pure Strike. They’re both 305g unstrung, with swingweights around 325 and an 18 x 20 string pattern, so I should feel quite at home with the 100P. The one small difference between the two rackets is the balance, where the 100P is just a little bit more headlight, so I should be able to whip up some real racket head speed with this stick.

We tried the Prince Textreme Tour 100 a few months back and were extremely impressed with its blend of spin and control which earned it an overall score of 8 out of 10. The 100P brings a slight reduction in weight from the Tour 100 from 310g to 305g, but one of the big differences between the two rackets is the string pattern.

The Tour 100P sees a switch to a much denser 18 x 20 string pattern, which should limit the spin potential of this racket slightly but add even more control. 18 x 20 string pattern rackets can be a bit of an acquired taste, but if done well, I think that they can appeal to a wide variety of players. I for one am a disciple of the 18 x 20 string pattern and so, I was greatly looking forward to trying out this racket.

To get the most out of these slightly lighter rackets with dense string patterns I find the most important thing is swing speed. Players who don’t produce much racket head speed often find the 18 x 20 string pattern very deadened and struggle to get the power and spin they crave. Luckily for me, I get a ton of racket head speed, especially on the forehand, and I find these rackets really suit me.

Knowing that the Prince Textreme Tour 100P has a very similar setup to my Pure Strike, I went with my normal string set up of Babolat RPM Blast at 52 lbs. For me, I find this balance works nicely, but for many players, I would say you might want to look at something a bit more power friendly for this racket.

If you want a little bit more advice on string setups then take a look at Tom’s excellent string tension guide and find the right string set up for you!

Based on my previous playtests with Prince rackets, the Textreme Tour 100P has a lot to live up to when compared to the Tour 100 but not a great deal compared to the Warrior 100 (sorry Warrior fans).

So, with that in mind, I set about doing my playtest hoping that the Tour 100P would give me the same thrills as it’s near cousin, the Tour 100.

Groundstrokes – 8/10

 

For those people who were put off in the intro when I said the 18 x 20 offers less spin potential than the 16 x 19 I’ve got some good news! The Tour 100P seems to offer plenty of spin as well as plenty of power, plenty of control, and plenty of feel. That’s a pretty great combo!

I’m always talking about rackets balancing power, spin, and control and that’s something I felt the Textreme Tour 100P does well. Although this racket is very maneuverable, I found that racket head speed wasn’t as important as I thought it might be because the 100P was a little bit more powerful than I expected.

This did come slightly at the expense of control, with the balance not being quite as control oriented as I thought it would be. Although this doesn’t necessarily suit my preferences I think it will make this racket more playable for the majority of players. I do find with my Pure Strike 18 x 20 that it’s a case of swing at 100% or don’t bother swinging at all, but the Textreme Tour 100P was a little bit more chilled out to play with.

This meant that I was able to vary the way I was playing throughout the match, switching between offense and defense easily. I’m much more of a front foot player who likes to attack by using the angles of the court and the Prince Textreme Tour 100P really suited this. But equally, when I felt like sitting back and soaking up pressure I felt extremely comfortable with the way the Tour 100P played.

If you’re looking for a racket that leans towards one characteristic in particular then this stick might not be the one for you because it’s nicely balanced. However, if you want something that is a firm middle ground then I would certainly suggest taking a look at this racket.

For me personally, I had the same slight problem with this racket as I did the Tour 100. I just found the 7PTS headlight balance to be a little bit too much. I just missed the little bit of extra weight I get in the head of the racket with my Pure Strike, and that would be the only real negative for me.

Put all this together and you get a really good score of 8 out of 10 for the Prince Textreme Tour 100P on the groundstrokes. On the plus side, it’s a very accessible racket for an 18 x 20 string pattern and I think there are a lot of players who will enjoy its feel.

 

Volleys – 7/10

 

This is going to sound very fussy, but I definitely feel a difference between the 310g weight of the Tour 100 and the 305g weight of the Tour 100P when it comes to volleying. As with my Pure Strike, I just found the Tour 100P lacked a little bit of stability at the net.

Somehow I felt like I’d hit the perfect volley and I was a little bit aggrieved when I watched the ball sail long. I’ve actually added a bit of weight to my Pure Strike (it’s now 312g) to combat this and the results have been really good, but in its custom specs, I was just a bit off with the Textreme Tour 100P.

On the plus side, I found the 100P to be super mobile at the net and I was getting into position with great ease. I always say the last thing you want to be worrying about when you’re at the net is getting into position in time and that’s certainly not a problem with this racket.

I also enjoyed the feel of the 18 x 20 string pattern. The ball came off the strings nicely, it was just the lack of weight in the head of the racket that didn’t allow me to absorb power quite as well as I normally would. On easy put-aways and overheads, the Textreme Tour 100P was a joy to play with though.

The Prince Textreme Tour 100P certainly isn’t bad at the net. I just felt it lacked a little bit of stability for the most difficult volleys. There’s nothing worse than feeling like you’ve hit the perfect pick-up only for the ball to sail long and I found I had this happen to me a few times. At the end of the day though, how often do you hit those kinds of volleys? Not very often. The rest of the time you’ll find this racket to be more than adequate on the volleys and so, it gets a 7 out of 10 from us.

Serve – 8.5/10

 

One thing’s for sure, the Textreme Tour 100P is a fun racket to serve with. It’s extremely fast through the swing, which means there’s a lot of potential for spin and power with this racket.

Whether it’s a first serve or second serve, you’re bound to find something you enjoy about this stick. For me, it was the excellent control that was combined with surprisingly good power. Sure, I was having a very good serving day, but I felt like a lot of that was down to the Tour 100P.

While I was getting good power and placement on the first serve, on the second serve I was able to introduce the spin that gives me a little bit more margin for error, meaning I could attack the first serve, confident in the fact I was going to make my second serves.

Although I really enjoyed playing with the Prince Textreme Tour 100P from the back of the court, serving was definitely my favorite part of this playtest. I was able to put my opponent under a lot of pressure from my serve and this allowed me to play the kind of front foot tennis that I enjoy.

I couldn’t ask for much more from this racket on the serve and it set me up nicely for the rest of my groundstroke play. An excellent performance on serve meant that the Prince Textreme Tour 100P gets an impressive 8.5 out of 10 from me.

 

Overall – 8/10

 

Overall, the Prince Textreme Tour 100P is another excellent racket from Prince. Although it’s specs are very similar to the Textreme Tour 100, the 100P offers a nice variation that will suit many people.

Chief among those people who will relish this racket are the aggressive baseline players who love to use their serve to get on the front foot. For an 18 x 20 racket, you get plenty of pop and spin potential from the 100P and attack-minded players will use this to keep their opponents on the run and under pressure.

That’s certainly not to rule this racket out for the counter-punchers out there though. This racket has got the kind of power and spin potential that means you can happily hang out on the back foot, waiting for your moment before you pounce. I do think the 100P leans slightly more towards attacking, but it’s versatile enough to suit all styles.

I found the weakest part of this playtest to be at the net, where I wanted a little bit more stability. I wouldn’t say the Textreme Tour 100P is a bad racket for volleying, I just found it lacked a little bit on the most difficult volleys. For the serve-volleyers out there you may find something different to me, but personally, it’s not the first racket I would recommend for someone who spends a lot of time at the net.

This was a racket I’ve been looking forward to trying for a long time now and I wasn’t disappointed. The Prince Textreme Tour 100P makes an 18 x 20 string pattern very accessible for a wide range of players, and I personally got on really well with it.

A score of 8 out of 10 overall marks it out as a racket that’s well worth taking a look at!

 

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Review by: Will