Dunlop appears to be a brand revitalized after forging its new partnership with global racquet maker Srixon. With a renewed focus on creating a lineup of classic player frames and the success on tour of sponsored pro Kevin Anderson, Dunlop appears to be trending upward. The introduction of the Dunlop Srixon Revo CX 2.0 represents a blend of traditional racquet attributes with some modern technology. In addition to classic specs like a 98 inch head and 21/21/20mm beam, Dunlop has some new tricks up their sleeve. The hoop utilizes a blend of silicone and urethane called Sonic Core for improved dwell time and energy return. Synchro Charge graphite provides improved feel and stability off center. All of this is packed into an accessible weight that makes classic feel and performance accessible to a variety of players. I had to hit the court and see for myself how the newest Dunlop would measure up.
Much like its big brother, the 2.0 Tour, control was the hallmark of baseline play with the Revo CX 2.0. The 11.2oz strung weight provided decent power but I did struggle with depth at times and found myself wishing for a bit more mass or a slightly stiffer beam to produce a bit more pop on my shots. The headlight balance made it easy for me to add pace but my shots simply lacked the heavy nature of a more powerful frame during extended rallies. Spin production was easier on this model thanks to its 16x19 pattern so I did find more spin readily available to help get the ball deeper into the court. Using the racquet’s inherently excellent control was where I did the most damage from the baseline. I was able to easily change direction and hit to aggressive targets, opening up the court and letting me take advantage of the space my accuracy created. I had good success flattening out mid court balls and guiding them to a corner that I could come in behind. Stability was average for racquets in this weight class but I could see myself customizing the hoop to reduce twisting (and to give it more power).
Volleys & Serves
Volleying with the Revo CX 2.0 was a high point of my court time with it. The compact 98 inch head and headlight balance made it incredibly easy to maneuver during net play and I never felt out of position with it. There was enough mass to drive volleys through the court however I did notice the frame had a higher tendency to float balls that were hit less aggressively. I found plenty of control for creating sharp angles and putting opponents on the run. The soft feel and fantastic ball pocketing made it easy for me to introduce drop and touch volleys into the mix. I enjoyed using the flexible response to feather the ball and watch it die just over the net.
On serve, the Revo CX 2.0 was a bit like bringing a sparkler to a professional fireworks show. The racquet accelerated easily through contact and I was able to apply decent pace on the ball. Despite this, my serve simply lacked when it came to moving through the court. The reduced mass and softer flex produced flat serves that had pace but lacked the heaviness to really compromise returners. On first serves, I became more reliant on directional control, hitting corners and the T with enough variety to keep opponents somewhat off balance. The 16x19 pattern did produce more spin than the 2.0 Tour model, which allowed me to generate better movement on my kick serve while retaining an effective slice serve. Overall, the racquet lent itself better to spot serving and following the ball in as opposed to blasting opponents back and dictating from the baseline.
The Revo CX family of racquets was a gem when it came to feel and the CX 2.0 was no exception. The softer flex and thin beam had a smooth feel and the sensation of the ball sinking into the string bed was truly enjoyable. It has become more and more difficult to find racquets that feel that way so I appreciated the classic response. I was well connected to the ball and found consistent response on all shots across the string bed. Comfort was never an issue during my time with this racquet. The Sonic Core material did an outstanding job absorbing vibration without killing the feedback on contact to the point that it felt numb. This model would easily play well with a variety of string types and tensions, allowing just about any player to use it comfortably.
Dunlop’s Revo CX 2.0 family is a return to form that proves they still know how to make a high quality player frame. The Revo CX 2.0 packs outstanding control and maneuverability along with enough feel for the most creative of shot maker. While it might lack the brute force of many of today’s modern frames, it’s a loving tribute to what made classic player frames great and is still plenty capable of smart, winning tennis in the hands of the right player. The Dunlop Srixon Revo CX 2.0 should deliver success for anyone who wants exceptional feel, control and a low powered response in a lighter weight class.
About the Reviewer: Matt Locke currently serves as the Junior Programs & Development Coordinator for USTA-Idaho and is an active USTA League and Tournament player.