My name is Tahl Leibovitz. I am a professional table tennis player. I was using the Stiga Boost TC for quite some time and decided to try out the Calibra Tour S. I wanted to try it because of the 2.1 sponge.
This rubber is different, when you touch the sponge it feels like it has no grip but when you hit the ball, you are able to get a lot of spin. What I really like about this rubber is that when someone gives me a lot of spin, this rubber is not effected as much but, at the same time I am able to impart a lot of spin. The rubber is excellent for smashing.
I have been training a lot with a recent USA National table tennis champion in mens singles and he says that since using this rubber I am playing the best he has seen me play in 10 years. In the practice matches I have been winning against him regularly.
Everyone I keep playing against keeps saying that I am playing the best I have ever played since I switched to this rubber. The sponge feels good in my hand. I am using a clipper classic blade with the rubber. I have paddle palace put varnish on the blade and then I sand it a little bit. The clipper blade allows me to move the ball forward more and I still have control. Its the only blade I have used where I can attack strong and still control the ball when blocking. It pairs really well with Calibra Tour S.
The calibra tour S is different than any rubber I have ever used. For me it is a very good rubber. It is better than boost TC. The top sheet is really different.
I also used the Calibra Tour M, which I like a lot also but, I have pain in my right hand and the rubber is a bit too heavy. The tour S and tour M are similar in weight but the balance of the tour S feels lighter. Also since the rubber is softer I dont have to use my wrist as much and the rubber can do more of the work for me. At the end of the practice my arm does not bother me as much. I also wrap my wrist and lower forearm in K-tape so it does not move very much during my training.
The weight of my entire racket is 176 grams. I use tour S 2.1 rubber and clipper blade. I get the clipper blade weight to be around 90 grams. However if my wrist was better I would probably make sure to get the clipper blade weight at 95. It depends what weight you want your entire set up to be. The tour S, even though it is soft, it is not light like a normal soft rubber. The boost TC is around 39 grams when you cut the rubber. The tour S, M and H are around 44 grams when you cut the rubber.
I will end by saying that switching to this rubber did make a difference in my game. I was probably playing 2425 level with boost TC. Everyone keeps telling me that with this rubber I am playing well above 2500. I am not so sure about that but, I know I have not played this well since 2004 when I was at the Athens Paralympic Games.
I also need to keep in mind that the sport has a strong mental component. Practice and tournament are different. I am planning to play 7 tournaments before the end of the year. Three of them will be international Paralympic tournaments. I will write another update when I finish but, for now, this rubber is excellent. I dont see my self switching. I also think this rubber will play even better with the plastic ball that will be introduced in the summer of 2014. This rubber might be even better with the plastic ball. That would be really great because I could get used to the ball more easily if I did not have to change equipment again. This rubber is amazing for smashing, blocking, controlling spin, serving, receive serve, smashing from off the table, retrieving, changing the spin on the opening loop and getting good spin off the first loop. It also works well for me in the quick rallies and when I loop or smash over the table.
If you like boost TC, I think you will really like this rubber.
Paralympic Gold Medalist
- Tahl Leibovitz, NY