Volume: 22.5 ml
Type (THS, Sport Pattern etc): THS with VERY clean back ends.
Likes: Very predictable. Keeps the ball in play and still rolls well and hits hard.
Dislikes: Not really a dislike, but simply something to keep in mind. As it is a non-reactive urethane there is a limit as to how much entry angle you can create. It's best to keep the line more direct. Fortunately, being non-reactive you can add a little speed as the lanes dry out, keep playing the same line, and not worry about it checking up too soon and jumping.
I've used this ball in two different houses so far. One house for two league sessions and another house for a practice session. I have to say that I'm extremely impressed. I'm still learning what the ball will and won't do, and the two league sessions have still come out to a 238.5 average, with one game in the 200's, one in the 220's, two in the 240's, and two in the 250's. Very predictable and even-rolling, as one would expect from a non-reactive urethane. What I didn't expect was how hard it would hit. Having a "real" core (symmetrical with a differential of 0.044) makes such a difference over other non-reactives. I had one shot in my last league session where I leaked it a bit wide. It hit the dry and recovered, but obviously not as hard as a reactive. I could see that it would make it back to the pocket, but expected to leave a weak 7 (I'm left handed). Instead I had a momentary "blower 7-10" until two messengers came flying from opposite sides, crisscrossed each other on diagonal paths, and took out both corner pins! To put it bluntly, this ain't your daddy's non-reactive. But it is still a non-reactive, so there are a few things to keep in mind. First of all, there is a limit as to how much entry angle you can create. Most of us would not be able to stand against the ball return and bank it off the gutter. A small swing is OK, but keeping it more direct is probably best. Second, as the lanes dry out you can keep playing the same line with a little more speed. With reactives, most of the time you can't do this. When they hit dry, they check up and jump no matter how hard you throw it. With this ball, a little more speed will give you some "push". Third, remember to bring a towel. Yep, you'll have to wipe the oil off this one off between frames. This is a ball that everyone could find a use for, but a few situations stand out in my mind. First, EVERY left hander should have one. As we normally play closer to the outside anyway, this ball will still roll and hit without having to worry about it knifing through the headpin. While not a reactive, it will still generate more than enough angle to get the job done from the outside. Especially if you can play up the boards or maybe 10-5. Second, bowlers on flatter conditions can see several advantages. On the fresh you can play more direct without having the ball go crazy on clean back ends. As the shot starts to break down, you can still play in the track area without moving deep and worrying about the ball skipping past the dry and into the out of bounds. And because it doesn't overreact, you can keep it in play and avoid the "alternating big four/washout" strings. Another place I can see this ball working is for those who have a high axis rotation but low tilt. Many times these players are stuck in "over/under" hell. The ball rolls too soon in the dry but won't recover enough if sent too much away from the pocket. This ball won't force them too deep, and let them use their heavier roll without overreacting in the dry. Lastly, I see this as a great ball for those with slower ball speeds or who are rev dominant. Many times these players struggle with reactives. Strong reactives grab too soon and die for slow speeds or are uncontrollable for the rev dominant. Weak reactives are an option, but either won't hit because of a weak core or completely skate and fizzle in the oil because of a weak (and usually polished) shell. This ball would allow them to have the control to find the pocket and the hit to carry. There are times when having a good reactive ball is necessary to compete, especially if you have the speed, rev rate, rotation, and tilt to utilize their potential. This is the ball for those other times and the rest of us.
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