Best Donnay Tennis Racquets

These days, with all the stars of the ATP tour kitted out with gear from Prince, Wilson, Babolat and Head, Donnay doesn’t get much of a look in. But turn the clock back to the 1980s and Donnay was producing the most tennis rackets of any manufacturer in the world. Andre Agassi, Bjorn Borg, Margaret Court, and Rod Laver all ran onto the court with a Donnay racket in their hands.

Why Buy a Donnay Tennis Racket?

Some of those were back in the day when rackets were made of wood, of course. After that, Donnay failed to make the switch over to graphite frames and couldn’t keep up with the latest technology. Other brands pulled ahead and Donnay, for a while, looked on the way out.

Now though, they’re making some great modern raquets and slowly turning their fortunes around. In 2010 they launched their innovative “x-series” of rackets, which offered an alternative design to the traditional hollow-framed racket, dampening vibrations and shocks by up to 35%. There’s a lot that’s impressive about their rackets, and reviewers are increasingly taking notice of the consistent build quality and excellent dampening. Even without a celebrity endorser, Donnay are certainly on the up.


Best Donnay Tennis Rackets

Donnay rackets are thin beamed and stiff, but (most importantly) cushioned and comfortable for volleys and groundstrokes. That’s a godsend to any players prone to, or worried about, wrist and elbow injuries. These distinctive and slightly stiff rackets may not be ideal for beginners, but an intermediate or advanced player with a powerful swing can find an awful lot to like.

Unlike many companies, Donnay don’t do the usual trick of making super expensive, high-tech rackets for pros, and then progressively worse and cheaper offerings for everyone else. All Donnay rackets come in at about the same price point, but which of these you’ll prefer will depend on your taste and play style. So, if you have the opportunity, pick one up and see what you think.

Donnay Allwood 102

Many tennis fans have fond memories of Bjorn Borg wielding his heavy wooden racket like a club, and this gorgeous retro recreation has all the stylings of the 70s original. Although not made from wood any longer, it is designed to replicate some of the feel of the original whilst being lighter and faster, like the graphite frames that modern players are used to and benefits from a much larger sweet spot.

Built with Donnay’s patented Xenecore technology, the Allwood 102 is super maneuverable, with one of the lowest swing-weights of any racket being produced today. Usually, that involves a sacrifice in power and stability, but the Allwood doesn’t have that problem. The large head size of the 102 comes with a correspondingly large sweet spot to play with, while the flexible and light design of the head negates the air resistance you’d expect to deal with as a result.


  • Frame Weight: 285g
  • Frame Material: Hexa XēneCore™, fortified solid core
  • String Pattern: 16×19
  • Grip: Cushion
  • Head size: 102 square inches
  • Unstrung Balance: 325mm
  • Unstrung Swing Weight: 263
  • Stiffness (RDC): 50
  • String Tension: 45lbs (+/- 10)
  • Beam Width: 22mm
  • Length: 27

Due to its design, this racket won’t help you generate a lot of power if that’s an aspect of your game that you struggle with, but you equally don’t need to be 6’11” inch giant with the reach of Ivo Karlovic to benefit from what the Allwood 102 has to offer. This is great for players who like smashing balls down the baseline, or for recreational doubles players.

Donnay Pro One Penta 97

Like most of Donnay’s rackets, the Pro One Penta 97 is a heavy-hitter, which doesn’t feel like it. Most players (unless their name rhymes with Foger Rederer) can’t hope to drag a heavy racket through their air and make it look elegant, except maybe with a Donnay Pro One Penta 97.

The 18×20 string pattern makes this much easier to wield and has more power than near-equivalents like the Wilson Pro Staff 97. However, unlike the Pro Staff, the Pro One is also a good option for players who don’t rely wholly on strength. For its size, this racket has a very low swing rate and is easy to control.

Donnay have also added a fifth, foam core to the center of their frames, increasing the ability of Donnay’s rackets to absorb vibrations and shocks. As a result, this is an incredibly comfortable racket to play with, and a great choice for anyone prone to wrist, arm or elbow strain.


  • Frame Weight: 305g
  • Frame Material: Penta XēneCore™, fortified solid core
  • String Pattern: 18×20
  • Grip: Cushion
  • Head size: 97 square inches
  • Unstrung Balance: 315mm
  • Strung Weight: 317.5g
  • Strung Balance: 5 Points HL
  • Stiffness (RDC): 57
  • String Tension: 45lbs (+/- 10)
  • Beam Width: 21/21/21mm
  • Length: 27

This is a fantastic racket for strong hitters who don’t want to have to pay the price in comfort or playability when it comes to their heavyweight style. The 18×20 string pattern also makes this a perfect racket for those who have a more closed stance and like to serve and volley, and those who only make use of moderate spin. If it’s spin you want, check out the 16×19 variant.

Formula Lite Pentacore 100

The Pentacore light exists for players who want the fantastic playability and comfort of the Penta, but prefer it in a lighter, more easy to handle package. Super light and evenly balanced, this moves through the air with enjoyable speed, whilst maintaining accuracy. The open string pattern (16×19) allows for lots of spin, too. Once again, this Donnay racket excels at vibration absorption, allowing you to generate lots of power and momentum, without feeling the shock running up from your wrist to your shoulder.

The Trademarked Xenecore tubing contained in the frame allows the racket to bend back slightly as it strikes the ball, but then to snap back into position in a nanosecond, launching the ball forward. This creates great power and accuracy, with marvelous stability.


  • Frame Weight: 275g
  • Frame Material: Penta XēneCore™, fortified solid core
  • String Pattern: 16×19
  • Grip: Cushion
  • Head size: 100 square inches
  • Unstrung Balance: 335mm
  • Strung Swing Weight: 300
  • Stiffness (RDC): 62
  • String Tension: 45lbs (+/- 10)
  • Beam Width: 20/27/24mm
  • Length: 27

A great racket for players interested in something like the Babolat Pure Drive Light, but wanting more power and control. If you’re a beginner or intermediate player, who likes the sound of Donnay rackets, but find their heavy-hitting credentials a bit intimidating, then the Formula Lite Pentacore 100 may be a good route in.

Donnay Superlite 114

Enough of the big hitters, what if you can’t generate the sort of power that Donnay rackets seem to demand? Well, the Superlite 114 was specifically designed for juniors, lower level and senior players, who can’t generate the sort of heavy swing employed by a pro in their prime.

The solid core of the Superlite 114 generates a huge power boost, and – thanks to its foam-filled Xenecore – still gives you the great vibration and shock absorption that Donnay is known for. Get the big punch you really want, without the painful shocks and jolts along the arm that usually come with it. The foam core also helps to keep everything incredibly airy, so that the Superlite 114 lives up to its name and checks in at a minuscule 240g unstrung. Even with a plus-sized head (114 square inches), you still end up with a maneuverable racket that has a fairly unbeatable swing weight in its class.


  • Frame Weight: 240g
  • Frame Material: Lite XēneCore™
  • String Pattern: 16×19
  • Grip: Cushion
  • Head size: 114 square inches
  • Unstrung Balance: 365mm
  • Strung Weight: 252.3g
  • Strung Balance: 6 Points HH
  • Mains Skip: 8T,7H,9H One Piece
  • Stiffness (RDC): 67
  • String Tension: 50lbs (+/- 10)
  • Beam Width: 30/30/28mm
  • Length: 27.25

The Superlite 114 is ideally suited to lower-level and senior players looking for a racket that can give their game a much-needed power boost. That said, Donnay reckons that a hard-hitting pro could take real advantage of the Superlite’s power and open-string pattern, and generate some impressive topspin. Why not give it a go?

The Last Word

Donnay are certainly the underdogs of the Tennis world; two breaks down in the final set. But after being outstripped technologically in the 90s, they came back with a wave of innovations that put them in a category all of their own. Donnay rackets certainly aren’t for everyone, and their designs have a distinct bias towards heavy-hitters, but there are plenty of powerful players about. More importantly, for a small and emphatic minority, the vibration absorption and cushioning provided by their rackets is a godsend for those who suffer from tennis elbow or any similar condition.

If you’ve never tried a Donnay racket before, have a look. They may well surprise you.

Best Prince Tennis Racquets

Founded in Atlanta, Georgia, Prince stormed onto the tennis scene in the 1970s when they invented the tennis ball machine. It was the first of their cunning innovations, created by putting a vacuum cleaner into reverse, and they’ve been innovating ever since.

Prince’s biggest success came in the 90s when brand ambassador and tennis legend Pat Rafter stormed to success after success. At that time, Prince tennis rackets were the top selling tennis rackets in the world, and who can really be surprised? Although sales have declined a little in recent years, facing stiff competition from Wilson, Head and Yonex, Prince are still a brand with a storied history, producing some of the most advanced rackets on the market.

Why Buy a Prince Tennis Racket?

Prince are a great brand with some fantastic rackets. They combine excellent build quality with an ethos of innovation that has produced some seriously impressive sports technology over the years. Their O3 technology in particular has created tennis rackets with enormous sweet spots, and people have taken notice. It’s no wonder that ATP Tour players like David Ferrer, John Isner, and Jelena Jankovic are all Prince fans.

Best Prince Tennis Rackets

Whilst Prince’s built quality is really very good, you really get what you pay for. Their entry level rackets are extremely affordable and get the job done, but they’re very bare bones as a result. Companies like Yonex might throw in some high tech design features just to be nice, but Prince are trying to get you to buy their better rackets if you can afford them. Of course, if you’re willing to pay, Prince’ s high-end rackets are some of the most advanced sports tech around.

Time to run you through some of the big hitters:

Prince TeXtreme Warrior 100L Tennis Racket

Best for Beginner/Intermediate Players

The TeXtreme Warrior 100L is a light racket, designed for long, heavy baseline rallies. A supremely light frame (255g) with a mid-large head size of 100 square inches, allows for excellent spin and power without sacrificing precision.

The headline here is the technology for which the racket is named: TeXtreme. This unique feature of Prince rackets involves stiffening the frame through the use of extremely thin, straight carbon fibres, to create a composite material that is 20% lighter than usual, as well as being more resilient. The resulting frame twists up to 25% less when it strikes the ball, increasing both strength and accuracy. As a result, TeXtreme rackets are well-suited to aggressive play.

With great power comes great vibration… all the way down your racket arm. Players susceptible to wrist and elbow strain may want to have a look at this racket, which generates a lot of power whilst dampening most of the forces involved.


  • Frame Weight: 255g
  • Frame Material: TeXtreme
  • String Pattern: 16×18
  • Grip: ResiPro
  • TeXtreme technology, for a lighter, stiffer racket
  • Compatible with Sony Smart Tennis Sensor

The TeXtreme Warrior 100Lis a solid choice for regular players. Its cost won’t break the bank, but it has some innovative design features that really help the player to get a great balance of weight, size, power, and control. Reviewers say that this racket is particularly suited to play styles with more compact strokes, so club players may find The Warrior ideal.

Prince TeXtreme Premier 105 Tennis Racket

Best for Professionals

Powerful, large and light – that’s the Prince TeXtreme Premier 105 in a nutshell. The 105 square inch head is combined with Prince’s O3 technology, a grommetless innovation that expertly dampens sudden vibrations, whilst increasing the size of the sweet spot by an enormous 54%. This means that the TexTreme Premier 105 boasts one of the most impressively large sweet spots ever made.

As with the Warrior 100L (above), TeXtreme technology has stiffened the racket through use of extremely thin, straight carbon fibres, creating a composite material that is 20% lighter than usual. The resulting frame twists up to 25% less when it strikes the ball, increasing both strength and accuracy. As a result, TeXtreme rackets are well-suited to aggressive play.


  • Frame Weight: 255g
  • Frame Material: 100% Graphite/TeXtreme
  • String Pattern: 16×19
  • Grip: ResiSoft
  • TeXtreme technology, for a lighter, stiffer racket
  • O3 Technology, increasing the sweet spot by 54%

The largest, lightest, most powerful racket in the Prince armoury, with a credible claim to having the largest sweet spot on a racket ever seen. This will be particularly rewarding to any players with shorter strokes, whilst the head size and open string pattern should allow players who love to spin and slice plenty of leeway. When it comes to volleying, the TeXtreme Premier 105’s surface area and stability make it impressive, and the extra reach of the head makes serving a cinch.

Advanced players looking for comfort and power need to look no further than the TeXtreme Premier 105.

Prince Warrior Elite Junior Tennis Racket

Best Prince Tennis Racket for Juniors

Young players don’t need to be about to turn pro in order to take advantage of a little high-tech quality. The Warrior Elite Junior boasts a good-sized 104 square inch head, with a great sweet spot.

The GraphAlu (Graphite/Aluminium) composition of the Warrior Elite keeps the racket nice and light, and it is strung using Extreme String Pattern (ESP) design, which can increase spin on the ball by up to 30%. With more spin you can get better clearance over the net, as well as excellent shot penetration.


  • Frame Weight: 8.7oz
  • Frame Material: GraphAlu (Graphite/Aluminium)
  • String Pattern: 14×16
  • Grip: TechniGrip
  • ESP (Extreme String Pattern)

Big, light, and just fun to play with. This is a great junior racket for a young player who’s taking their tennis a little more seriously. The GraphAlu and ESP design are great features, and they don’t add so much to the price that the Warrior Elite ESP becomes unaffordable.

The Last Word

Despite a fall from their 90s heyday, Prince are still one of the biggest Tennis brands in the world. They have an ethos of forward thinking and innovation, and they’re still putting out some of the best rackets you can buy. You get what you pay for, though, so don’t expect too much from their lower-end offerings.

Best Slazenger Tennis Racquets

Founded in 1881 by the Slazenger brothers, Ralph and Albert, Slazenger is a British brand with quite the legacy in tennis. They’ve been partnered with Wimbledon for more than a hundred years (a feat they hail as “the longest partnership is sporting history”), and they’ve been providing every single tennis ball to the All England Club from 1902 right up to the present day.

When Slazenger started, their balls were made from rubber and wool cloth, which had to be sown together by hand, meaning that no two balls were ever identical. The more modern ball design that everyone recognises only arrived in 1965, with their distinctive yellow colour making its first appearance in 1986.

Of course, Slazenger don’t just make balls, they make rackets too. Fred Perry, Margaret Court, Rod Laver and numerous other tennis legends all won their grand slams with Slazenger rackets. So if you buy a Slazenger racket, you’re investing in a brand with a long and storied tennis history, and you can be confident that you’re getting a quality product as a result. Sadly though, Slazenger aren’t quite the tennis legends that they once were. Over the years they have been steadily out-innovated by their competitors, like Wilson, Prince and Yonex, so they just aren’t on the radar of most players. However, if what you want is an affordable, quality racket that will get the job done, you can’t go far wrong with Slazenger.

hy Buy a Slazenger Tennis Racket?

Slazenger are all about affordability and solid quality. You get no high-tech carbon composites here, no fancy sounding technologies using trademarked substances originally designed by the military for use in stealth jets. You just get a good, old-fashioned racket that’s great for knocking tennis balls about a court. If you just want to get down the local park for some tennis, and don’t want to take out a bank loan before you get started, Slazenger are as solid as they come.

The Best Slazenger Tennis Rackets

Unlike a lot of brands, who offer a dizzying array of product lines and distinct models, Slazenger likes to keep things simple. They make four different rackets (in various sizes), and they make those four designs to the best quality they can. We’ll run them down for you here:

Slazenger Smash Tennis Racket

Best for Beginners

The Smash is Slazenger’s entry-level offering and comes complete with a lightweight, tubular aluminium alloy frame and a cushioned grip for greater power and control. Factor in the price and you have an ideal start-up racket for someone who just wants to have a go without investing too much in expensive kit.


  • Frame Material: Alloy
  • Strip Pattern: 18×15
  • Grip: Cuchioned Grip
  • Headsize: 102 square inches
  • Length: 27 inches
  • Comes in a range of sizes.

You can’t argue with an entry-level racket when it’s this affordable. Light in the hand, and comfortable for casual play. As with all Slazenger’s rackets, this is very solidly made and should last the casual player a good long while.

Slazenger Prodigy Tennis Racket

Best for Intermediate Players

The Slazenger Prodigy Tennis Racket is an ideal choice for beginners thanks to its lightweight graphite alloy frame construction and generous head size (98 square inches). The racket enjoys a cushioned grip on the handle, which allows for firm hold and superb control when moving between forehand and backhand strokes. It also cushions the arm a little from vibrations and impact shocks when the ball is struck. The racket is finished off nicely with distinctive Slazenger puma branding.


  • Frame Weight: 290g
  • Frame Material: Graphite alloy construction
  • Strip Pattern: 18×15
  • Grip: Cushioned grip
  • Headsize: 98 square inches
  • Unstrung balance 325mm
  • String tension 52-62lbs
  • Slazenger graphics

As with all Slazenger rackets, this is a really solid build, and at such an affordable price most beginners won’t need better. If you’ve only just got into tennis, you won’t really need all the fancy features that an expensive entry-level racket from a premium brand like Yonex or Volkl will provide. That’s the sort of thing that only advanced players need to worry about. Until you put in the hours practising and are ready to join the tennis elite, the Slazenger Prodigy will amply serve your needs without asking you to break into your life savings to do it.

Slazenger Pro Tennis Racket

Best for Pro Players

Of all of Slazenger’s rackets, the Slazenger Pro is the offering that has got them some attention recently. Reviewers rave about its lightness, build quality and feel, and generally seem a bit surprised that Slazenger have produced such a lovely racket to play with. (They also just can’t get over the price.)

It may not have a celebrity endorser, but the Slazenger Pro can go toe-to-toe with the features offered by a lot of the more expensive rackets available on the market, particularly with its lightweight graphite construction (weighing in at a mere 255g) and its soft, comfortable handle. You’ll be able to switch between forehands and backhands with ease, whilst maintaining excellent control throughout. Again, the cushioned handle is a real bonus for anyone prone to wrist or elbow strain. This is a racket that feels great in the hand and is strung with a pro-standard 16×19 string pattern for improved power, precision and spin.


  • Frame Weight: 255g
  • Frame Material: Graphite construction
  • Strip Pattern: 16×19
  • Grip: Soft grip handle
  • Headsize: 100 square inches
  • Slazenger branding

With 100 square inches of surface, the Slazenger pro has a large sweet spot, while its graphite frame keeps it light and responsive. Best of all is the price, which means it can keep up with several far more expensive rackets currently available. With the Slazenger Pro, you can buy a great intermediate quality racket for the kind of price that wouldn’t even buy you a beginner’s racket from Wilson or Yonex. Almost any tennis player, other than someone heading for the pros, should be able to find something to like about this racket.

Slazenger Smash Junior Tennis Racket

Best Slazenger Tennis Racket for Juniors

This is the junior version of the Slazenger’s entry level racket, the Smash. Durable, lightweight and extremely forgiving, this is a fantastic choice for juniors. It has a lightweight alloy frame and a lovely cushioned grip, that gives great control and power (considering its size and price). The Smash also comes in a range of sizes and colours, with Slazenger’s trademark puma logo, so that younger players can always find a racket that they’ll love.

The Slazenger Smash Junior is super affordable but robust enough that it can take a bit of a beating in the hands of a frustrated new player, or from a casual young player who isn’t inclined to treat their tennis racket like a sacred object. The Smash is an ideal transition from a full junior racket to an adult one, without having to shell out vast sums for something high-tech. Practical, functional, and ready for play anywhere, anytime.


  • Perfect for junior players
  • Available in a range of sizes
  • Available in a range of colours

A superb, durable racket at a ridiculously low price. Perfect for children just getting into the game, and perfect for parents that don’t want to worry too much about the inevitable chips and dents.

The Last Word

Owning a Slazenger racket is like buying into a bit of tennis history. If you grew up watching Wimbledon in the summer, then every single ball that you watched being knocked about by one of the pros had a Slazenger logo emblazoned on its side. That’s the way it’s been for this British brand for well over a hundred years.

These days, they may not be the most high-tech manufacturer of tennis rackets, and they certainly don’t have the shiny celebrity endorsements that a lot of buyers have come to expect, but that’s no comment on their quality. Slazenger are still plugging away after more than a century, producing great affordable products for sports enthusiasts everywhere, and their rackets – particularly the Slazenger Pro – are well worth your time.