The best of both worlds. That’s the theory behind hybrid stringing. By combining two different strings—one each in the mains and crosses—you can create a sum that’s superior to the parts. A string bed that is firm, responsive and durable yet still comfortable and arm-friendly. One that produces controllable and predictable shots, but can generate pace without over-swinging. And can apply heavy spin to shots, while still capable of driving the ball through the court.
The tricky part is marrying two strings that result in the desired characteristics and playability. The most popular pairing is a polyester with a multifilament or natural gut. But more inventive blends can incorporate like strings of different gauges or shapes. Some manufacturers offer pre-packaged options, but with so many strings available there’s no shortage of potential combinations. It’s easy for hybrid users to suffer from Goldilocks syndrome—this mixture is pretty good, but another duo could be perfect.
Tecnifibre’s Fusion category of strings looks to simply this process. That’s because they’re designed to meld the best properties of polys (control, spin, durability) and multis (power, comfort, arm protection) into a single hybrid-in-one string.
Unlike other options purporting to accomplish this feat, Fusion strings don’t just have a poly core surrounded by multifilament fibers. Instead, this technology weaves polyester and polyamide (regular multifilament) fibers together to create a unique string. All the Fusion strings are injected with polyurethane resin to absorb shock and surround and protect the fibers.
The new flagship string for the family is Triax. It’s Tecnifibre’s most technical string with a composition of 50% TPI (Thermo Process Improved) poly fibers, and 50% multifilament fibers. It’s the firmest feeling string in the Fusion category, designed to be a multifilament for polyester players.
Having tested out Triax, it was advertised. There was a crisp yet comfortable feel at contact that felt more poly than multi. It produced manageable power, reliable targeting and respectable spin generation. Even after several sessions string snapback was constant, with no notching or fraying. It would be an excellent option for seasoned poly players looking for a kinder, more cushioned response, but avoid something too soft and powerful. It could also be attractive to rising juniors who want more control and feedback than they’re getting from a multifilament, but aren’t quite ready for the rigors a true polyester.
Triax is currently available in 16/17g sets ($20) and reels ($270). Look for it online or at tennis specialty retailers.