Rec. Strings:: Premier with Softflex
Maria Sharapova's racquet, the Prince 03 White is another of Prince's players racquets in the 03 line.
While it doesn't have quite the same forgiveness or feel as the Prince 03 Red, the 03 White is characterized by an overall feeling of solidity.
Hitting off the ground, I felt as though I had excellent control, with easily enough power to hit winners effortlessly. Generating topspin was no problem at all, due to excellent swing speed and a beautifully balanced frame.
I had a little difficulty hitting slice backhands with the same penetration and accuracy that I'm used to, but only because the racquet is a little heavier than my own. I had the feeling that it would only take me a few days to feel completely comfortable with this shot.
Around the net, it's not as agile as the Prince 03 Red, but it's a great racquet for "firming" balls into the corner. Just as when hitting groundstrokes, I felt that volleying with this racquet produced a really heavy ball, well suited to the power player rather than someone who relies on touch and finesse.
For serving and smashing, the Prince 03 White presented no problems at all. In fact, just the opposite. Whether I was hitting flat first serves or heavily spun second serves, I felt as though I had total control over both my swing and the racquet.
Even though it's only 10.6 ounces (unstrung), the 03 White produces a ball that seems as though you've hit it with a much heavier racquet. Overall, this racquet will appeal to a wide variety of players, from the aggressive baseliner to the traditional serve and volleyer.
If you're a player who likes to outmaneuver your opponent with angles, dropshots and lobs, this racquet's not for you. But if you're an advanced player who likes to take the initiative, either at the baseline or at the net, the Prince 03 White is a racquet to be taken seriously.
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