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Best Intermediate Versatile Padel Rackets 2023

Updated May 28, 2024

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Adipower CTRL 3.2
Ultimate Tour
Kenta
Speed Pro
LS Pro
PR990 Hybrid Hard
PR990 Hybrid Soft
Price
Best for
Intermediate and advanced right-side players seeking control and a large sweet spot
Intermediate point builders seeking versatility and agility
Intermediate versatile players seeking spin
Intermediate players seeking a playable teardrop
Intermediate and up players seeking a medium-hard versatile racket
All levels of players seeking a versatile medium-hard touch racket
All levels of players seeking a versatile medium touch racket
Score
Overall
8.7
8.1
Power
Control
9.0
Sweet Spot
9.0
Maneuver.
8.5
Overall
8.1
8.3
Power
Control
8.0
Sweet Spot
8.0
Maneuver.
8.6
Overall
8.1
7.8
Power
Control
8.0
Sweet Spot
8.0
Maneuver.
8.0
Overall
8.3
8.6
Power
Control
8.0
Sweet Spot
8.0
Maneuver.
7.9
Overall
8.5
8.8
Power
Control
9.0
Sweet Spot
8.0
Maneuver.
8.0
Overall
7.9
8.0
Power
Control
8.0
Sweet Spot
8.0
Maneuver.
7.7
Overall
7.9
6.6
Power
Control
8.0
Sweet Spot
8.0
Maneuver.
8.5
Cons
No items found.

Table of Contents

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What we’re looking for

Some of us are looking for a little bit of everything.

We're looking for a racket that has enough weight in the head to give us that extra punch without slowing us down at the net.

We're looking for a racket with a medium hardness so that when smashing, the ball isn’t totally swallowed by the racket face, but we still get a healthy bounce effect from the back of the court and a pretty forgiving sweet spot.

Ladies and gents, we’re talking about the best intermediate versatile rackets.

Our top pick

{{racket-card="/racket-reviews/adipower-ctrl-3-2"}}

This racket really surprised our reviewers. It has "CTRL"or control in the name. It has a frankenstein shape-I would not call this shape "round." And it's played with by one of the most powerful players in the game - Alex Ruiz.

But as soon as you hold it in your hand, you understand...this racket is a perfect choice for someone who wants a little help in everything.

Undecided players, or players who don't want to sacrifice one element of their game in their racket choice should seriously consider this racket.

It has a Adidas's High Memory core - their hardest, which is, surprisingly, not very hard.

It has Adidas's aluminized carbon surface, which is, on the other hand, pretty hard.

We rate this racket's overall hardness as medium.

The Adipower Mercedes star-shaped Spin Blade grabs the ball quite well.

Many reviewers, ourselves included, do not love the non-cinching wrist straps of Adidas rackets, but there are methods (add a hair band) to provide a decent fix if it bothers you enough. 12cm handle.

Adipower CTRL on court play test

A close second

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Oxdog Ultimate Tour play test on court

The Oxdog Ultimate Tour is Oxdog's medium touch diamond-shaped racket. Despite its shape, it has a pretty low balance, so it plays like a medium touch teardrop-shaped racket.

It tops this list as it has a premium feel with all of the finishings you could think of. It's muted sound and comfortable aerial game pleased our reviewers.

One of the top rackets of the year.

Go for the Ultimate Pro+ if you're interested in a medium-hard touch and .5-1cm higher balance.

For a little more power

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Starvie's Made in Spain Raptor pro is Argentinian rulo king, Franco Stupaczuk's, former signature racket.

This is a versatile round-shaped racket with a medium balance that excels in both control and power.

There are two versions of this racket - we recommend the version with the soft (30) core to intermediate players. Starvie errs on harder cores than most brands, and the Pro version is very hard.

Starvie produces this racket with a black and white paint job and a red and white paint job - no change in construction.

Another great option

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A new entrant

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Kuikma's new Pro line has all of the features (and more) of the €400 rackets from the biggest brands Adidas, Babolat, Nox, etc.: multi-EVA cores, certified vibration-reduction inserts, EVA-filled frame, premium 3K carbon fiber.

I'm not sure why this racket hasn't gotten more attention yet. It has one of the harder touches of rackets on this list, so we only recommend it for upper intermediate players who are familiar with the benefits and drawbacks of a harder touch, in short: more control/power, smaller sweet spot.

The best buys

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How we’re going to find it

Medium balanced

When we look for an intermediate versatile racket, we’re looking for a balance between 26-27 centimeters.

This will give our smashes an extra push compared with low-balance rackets while maintaining maneuverability for quick exchanges at the net and defense at the back of the court.

Medium hardness

All else being equal, we encourage players at the intermediate level to use rackets with medium hardness.

Medium hardness provides a nice compromise between ease of use and control/power. If you’ve recently experienced joint issues, i.e. elbow or wrist pain, consider a “Medium-soft” alternative from our our guide to the Best Soft Padel Rackets. You can also filter our Padel Racket Reviews Database by Hardness.

I’m writing this in July, so I would also like to point out that many of us in the northern hemisphere have another few months of >30°C weather.

Remember that high temperatures soften the foam of the racket's core and makes the rubber of the ball bouncier, so your racket will feel harder in winter than in summer.

For this reason, many players opt for harder rackets in the summer to counteract the foam's softening in higher temperatures.

We provide hardness scores on individual rackets that summarize the opinions of our expert reviewers.

Hello and welcome!

I'm Timo, and I'm here to help you find the right padel racket. If you want help, let me know! If you find this page helpful, please use our affiliate links, e.g Padel Nuestro, Racketspecialisten, 10% OFF at PadelFreunde,

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