Is STIGA’s Cybershape the next marketing trick that all big manufacturers use to increase sales? Tricky names or shapes, naming a blade from a top player also boosts fans to buy. You surely remember the feeling when you have a Harimoto Tomokazu Innerforce Super ZLC in your hand you feel you can play like him.
We all watched Truls Carl Eric Möregårdh at the latest World Championships, Houston, USA final against Fan Zhendong and wondered not also the performance of the Swedish player but also the extreme shape of his bat. This bat is so-so strange that your first thought could be “poor Stiga could not find any new just this stop-sign shaped something and they trying to push it with marketing.”
Yes. It was our first idea also but as a table tennis blade manufacturer by analysing Truls’ matches and style and checking a Stiga Cybershape blade (thanks to DALI Sport) we found some brilliant moments:
- The octagonal shape geometry provides some good features that is not possible with the traditional shape.
- Release timing could not be better than WTTC 2021 that is the biggest table tennis event worldwide.
- Stiga’s player Möregårdh also an excellent choice because they can say it must be the blade that boosted the WR71 player to win silver. (If you give this racket to a TOP10 player you cannot say it is the blade that helped)
- And yes, the sweetspot of that blade is bigger, but in our oppinion it is “just” a result.
So, we respect Stiga’s strategy since they made maximum advantage with minimal risk, but this could not work without a good blade so let us tell the secret behind Cybershape:
We made a short test with an 83g Cybershape and made a drawing combined to our Virtuoso S size to explain the differences.
The main innovation is the weight centre manipulation. The octagonal shape makes possible to move the weight centre towards the head and this is the main advantage of this table tennis blade. Pro players usually use 90-95g blades not because they are strong but need head balanced blade to make heavy shots. Cybershape provides extreme head heavy behaviour with even 83-85g as you can see on the drawing. Although they pushed the centre of mass only few mm upwards with rubbers on it is multiplicated.
With this solution Stiga succeeded to make a blade that supports close to the table and over the table style and mid distance at the same time. It is also true – as with any kind of blade – that it is built for an exact style of playing so it is not universal and this way has disadvantages also:
- We believe this octagonal shape lose its advantages around over 90g.
- Cybershape is not a feeling blade. In the neck area it needs rigid material that is why this Stiga blade is made of 6.2 mm thick 7 ply composite.
- Also important that with this blade the you will lack heavy spins from further from the table.
This blade clearly proves our motto:
“The blade determines the playing style and playing style demands the blade fits the style.”