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Article: Wilson Blade 98 v8 (16x19) Review

Wilson Blade 98 v8 (16 x 19)

Wilson Blade 98 v8 (16x19) Review


A seamless for update for Blade fans


The Wilson Blade 98 v8's (16x19) attractive design is combined with a new layup that accommodates a more modern, vertical swing path that is common among competitive players. The Wilson Blade Line has provided all court playability over the past seven generations, and players can expect more speed, precision, feel, and spin with the v8. An update of the v7, this top tier racket is a must try for intermediate or advanced players, because of its all-court versatility.



The main innovation FORTYFIVE°, increases flexibility and stability on the frame, accommodating the modern vertical swing path. Additionally, DirectConnect technology connects the end cap to the handle for a sensational feel. These modifications are a welcome change to many players, as past criticisms of the blade line were aimed at its sluggish and stiff feel. The relatively unchanged specs from the v7 complete a manoeuvrable, control orientated, spin friendly frame.



Weight unstrung (+/-5g)

305 grams

Head size

98 sq in

Beam width


Balance (+/- 5mm)

320 mm (Head light)

String pattern

16 x 19


27 in 


Braided Graphite + Basalt



One should not be alarmed at the relatively unchanged specs though. Longtime users should welcome the new subtle changes (the enhanced feel & stability). Players who play aggressive tennis can swing for the fences without worrying about control, and the open 16 x 19 string pattern provides adequate topspin with forehand shots. The small 98 square inch head size helps to maintain excellent control and the frames comfort encourages players to open up their swing to generate power. The string pattern gives the ball a natural lift, favouring players who wish to produce heavy groundstrokes.


Up at the net, the moderate weight and the sizeable, sweet spot delivers controlled and accurate volleys. The added stability creates opportunities for all shot varieties including powered, drop, and angled volleys. A versatile blend of delicate touch and power, the manoeuvrability assures players of hitting their desired spots, which is a great tool to use during doubles games.


For serves, the racket benefits from superb spin and quick whipping ability, especially for kick serves. It is a solid all-round performer for serving, but it does not have that natural “pop” that usually comes with stiffer rackets. Players who enjoy fast racket speeds, will find the blade suitable for their serving game.


Against big hitters, the racket lacks some stability. The blade may need some extra weight for returns, but it’s quick on the backswing and relatively forgiving on off centre shots. Slices against powerful serves feel solid off the stringbed. Returns against fast serves can be tricky, due to a lack of control, but customization could fix some of these minor issues.


In an overall sense, The Wilson Blade 98 v8 (16x19) is an arm friendly racket that is suitable for a variety of different game styles. Aggressive baseliners and big hitters who demand maximum spin and power may be disappointed with the new update, but players who found the past blade rackets too heavy should take a look at the v8, in its beautiful, dynamic, colour-shifting elastic finish. While adding subtle refinements that enhance performance, it’s an excellent all court frame for players who have developed sufficient skills. A livelier racket that retains the classic Blade feel.



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