Babolat New OverDrive 105 Racquet Review
As predicted the racquet had excellent plow through, good control, great spin and more than enough power. Since the 105” head size is readily apparent, I really like it at the net, of course, more than anything. It was everything an intermediate or advanced player could need. Though for my liking a little more control would do the job—which could easily be rectified by changing the strings to the Babolat RPM Blast and increasing the tension a little. I felt the ball better than most racquets of this head size, I had good control, great touch and good power with not too much over hitting… The overall balance is great. I would give it an A rating on the groundstrokes.
Return of Serve
The pivotal test! My forehand return of serve, as predicted was awesome with tremendous power, decent control, very good feel and placement. A+ rating. The backhand was great…decent control, very good placement and a nice feel. However, I lacked the power I needed to really drive the ball and I suspect that the lightness of the frame didn’t allow me to drive it like I wanted to, still an awesome stick to return with. B+ rating for backhand return.
Most of my game now is Men’s Doubles (4.0 to 4.5 type quality) so having a maneuverable stick that can generate power, feel and touch is critical. The Overdrive was great, and I really had no issues with the volleys at all. I was able to manage the racquet with no issues. I had depth, placement and power. A+ for volleys.
So this is where I thought for sure my issues would begin. So it’s all timing, placement and a lot of effort. I do like a head heavy racquet for serving, but at my age, my arm and body can’t take two hours of high-quality doubles without feeling it later. I can say, without a doubt, that the Overdrive preformed 100% like it should. It felt awesome, controlled and I produced great spin with an ample amount power. This leads me to believe maybe a small amount of lead-tape on the Overdrive would do a world of good. I was very impressed with the way it performed on the serve. A rating.
This is a good racquet. No doubt. I’m not sure I’ve felt another racquet as pure as this one for its size head. It had everything an intermediate to advanced player would want. A clear winner for 3.5+ players with medium swing speeds looking for a lighter more even balanced frame.