PLAY­ING WITH … CALL­AWAY X FORGED UTIL­ITY IRON

Cost: $349.99. Tested by: Jimmy Emanuel, Golf Aus­tralia Writer (GA Hand­i­cap 9.4)

Golf Australia - - CONTENTS -

The X Forged of­fers an in­of­fen­sive look that blends well with bet­ter player iron sets but how did it per­form?

MODEL PLAYED: 18° loft, fit­ted with KBS Tour C-Ta­per stiff shaft. FIRST IM­PRES­SIONS: The look of the X Forged UT matches per­fectly with Call­away’s new forged iron mod­els. The back of the Util­ity is al­most iden­ti­cal to the X Forged iron and at ad­dress it looks like a slightly beefed up ver­sion, with a thicker topline and slight bulge at the back.

Off the club­face I in­stantly no­ticed how pow­er­ful the X Forged UT felt, with the ball re­ally jump­ing off the face and the ball flight low and strong. HOW IT PER­FORMED: I have al­ways been a fan of util­i­ties and reg­u­larly have one in the bag – and this model is right up there with my favourites that I have tried thanks to its pow­er­ful flight, which is also work­able and rea­son­ably for­giv­ing.

The X Forged isn’t go­ing to turn a ter­ri­ble long iron player into a great ball striker but for play­ers, like my­self, who still pre­fer to carry a longer iron that can be hit low and be re­lied upon to find a fair­way when the longer clubs aren’t be­hav­ing, it is a very solid per­former.

The ball flight is on the low side but doesn’t go un­der­ground by any means. When hit side by side with an equiv­a­lent hy­brid the flight was no­tice­ably more pen­e­trat­ing and just a frac­tion lower than my older model Call­away X Pro­to­type Util­ity, which has been a long time ser­vant. The slightly lower ball flight com­bined with a live­lier feel off the face to pro­duce a longer flight for me when com­pared with the hy­brid and my older model.

When test­ing the X Forged on the course, a cou­ple of good strikes re­ally took off and kept run­ning when they hit the fair­way and fin­ished near where my driver typ­i­cally fin­ishes on the same hole.

Ball flight changes can be eas­ily achieved with a slight setup and swing ad­just­ment, with the low, fad­ing fair­way fin­der my favourite shot dur­ing test­ing.

Mis-hits felt dif­fer­ent enough to know you haven’t made your best swing but the re­sult is typ­i­cally de­cent and the loss in dis­tance is far less than it would be with the same lofted iron.

With its live­lier face than other util­i­ties I have used, the X Forged did on oc­ca­sion have a big miss closer to that of a hy­brid or fair­way wood than an iron. But the dis­tance gains both off the mid­dle and on mis-hits were enough of a pos­i­tive for me to over­look the oc­ca­sional wide shot, that was the ex­cep­tion rather than the rule.

Over­all, the X Forged does as one would ex­pect. Of­fer­ing some added for­give­ness and power to a long iron, with an in­of­fen­sive look that blends well with bet­ter player iron sets. The abil­ity to still work the ball and not be se­verely pun­ished for mak­ing a less than per­fect swing on most oc­ca­sions make the X Forged UT a great op­tion for non-hy­brid users or any­one who hits plenty of long irons off the tee or fair­way but wants a lit­tle ex­tra for­give­ness.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.