Yonex Ezone 98 305g (2020) Specs
Head Size: 98 in² / 632 cm²
Length: 27in / 68,5cm
Strung Weight: 320g / 11,3oz
Unstrung Weight: 305g/10,8oz
Balance: 32,39cm / 6 pts HL
String Pattern: 16 Mains / 19 Crosses
We’ve been looking forward to the release of the new Yonex Ezone 98 for quite some time now and we were excited to get out there and do some playtesting.
The Ezone rackets are known for their wonderful playability and at 305g unstrung, this stick is very accessible for the majority of players. It’s more of a modern style of racket, offering plenty of speed, spin, and power from a relatively lightweight package that’s easy on the arm.
Endorsed by maverick talent, Nick Kygrios, the latest update of the Ezone 98 includes a redesigned beam that offers greater stability and Liner Tech technology which reduces string on frame friction for extra comfort and power.
Of all Yonex’s rackets, we find this one to be the one that virtually anyone can get on with. It offers a blend of characteristics that anyone can work with, and the easy playability is hard to beat.
One area where we would have liked a little bit more from the old Ezone 98 is control, so for this playtest we went with a pretty control-oriented string setup of Babolat RPM Blast at 52lbs. We all like to swing big and go for our shots, so the RPM Blast should help tame some of the natural power of the Ezone.
We were ready to see how the new Yonex Ezone 98 would stack up against the older version, so how did it do?
Groundstrokes – 8/10
The first thing we noticed with the new Ezone was the power potential. This stick’s got some serious pop to it, and when you combine it with some good spin potential, you’ve got the ability to hit a very heavy ball.
I would have preferred a bit more control, which is why I would lean towards the Vcore Pro 97, but the Ezone offers a great alternative for players looking for more power and spin. It’s that power and spin, combined with the easy swinging nature of this frame that makes it so easy to play with.
For players with aggressive strokes, it’s got the stability to tame the ball into court, but equally, with more gentle strokes it’s got plenty of pop. As always with the Ezone rackets, it’s very comfortable to play with and you get some great feel.
When you look at all the great qualities we’ve listed, you’ve pretty much ticked off every box. It’s one of those rackets that does a little bit of everything and every player will find something they like about it.
A good performance earned the Yonex Ezone 98 a good score of 8 out of 10 from the back of the court.
Volleys – 7.5/10
This was an area where we enjoyed the new version a little bit more than the older Ezone 98. It just seemed to have a little bit more stability and this translated into a more solid volleying performance.
The Ezone really is an all-round performer, giving excellent performance at the net for a 305g racket. I felt like I had a ton of feel at the net, allowing me to hit those more delicate volleys, but when you need to inject pace into the ball that’s easy to do too.
You must be getting bored keep hearing me say this, but this racket is just easy to play with and there’s something everyone can like in it. The 305g weight is going to work for a lot of players and it does very well at the net for this weight range.
I probably preferred this stick slightly more for singles, but it didn’t let me down at the net in doubles in any way. It moves quickly through the air and had enough stability to absorb power and give me the control I needed.
This was a good performance from the Yonex Ezone 98, proving it is strong at the net as well as from the back of the court. We gave it a 7.5 out of 10 at the net.
Serve – 8.5/10
We absolutely loved the old Ezone 98 when it came to the serve and the new racket didn’t disappoint either. We felt like the man Nick Kygrios himself while we were hitting bombs with this racket, winning lots of free points and putting us on our way to some easy holds.
It’s the combination of speed, power, and feel that comes up trumps on the serve, helping you get into a great rhythm. On the first serve I felt I had everything I wanted when it came to hitting the big flat ones, but equally, when I wanted to mix in some spin serves, I had that ability too.
This racket worked nicely for the second serve as well, giving me good spin and control, and giving me the confidence to keep the racket head speed up. It’s always a challenge to keep your racket head speed up on an important second serve, but when you’ve got confidence in the racket, it’s that little bit easier.
Even though I tend to lean towards rackets that are a little bit heavier than this one, I find 305g works really well for my serve, and the Ezone 98 was a perfect example of this.
We gave the Yonex Ezone 98 a great score of 8.5 out of 10 for the serve.
Return – 8/10
There’s no point hitting huge serves if you can’t make returns, but again, this was an area where we found we got on well with the Ezone 98.
The high levels of feel help you guide the ball back deep, getting you a good foothold in the point and allowing you to unleash your groundstrokes. The easy maneuverability of this stick is once again a big plus, and you feel like you can get your hands through the ball nice and quickly, allowing you to hit the ball out in front.
On the second serve, when you’ve got a bit more time to take a big cut at the ball, you’ve got access to that good power and spin you need to start to take control of the point, and we were able to use this to good effect.
We enjoyed this part of the playtest and gave the Yonex Ezone 98 an 8 out of 10.
Overall – 8/10
Overall, we really enjoyed the updated Ezone 98. It was already a good racket, but we found Yonex had just taken things up a notch. If you’re looking for maneuverability, spin, and feel in a 305g stick, then you can’t go wrong with this Ezone.
A particular highlight of this playtest was the excellent serving performance. Not only does this racket help you generate good racket head speed, but it turns it into meaningful power and spin that puts your opponent under pressure.
From the back of the court, you get a comfortable ride, with easy access to power and spin, and the kind of feel that makes you want to go for creative shots. Whatever style you play though, the Ezone is an option for you, and it even does a good job at the net for a 305g racket.
Whether it’s for singles or doubles, we found the Ezone to be a great option, and it certainly deserved our overall score of 8 out of 10.
Review by: Will