What we say...
Oct 2012 Fairways Test
The classic looks and powerful feel proved an excellent combination. Mick said the compact head and slightly open face would suit better players and pro James and David agreed. Fantastic option for consistent players.
TG Ratings (out of 5)
I’ve always been intrigued by the claim that certain clubs are more suited to better players, and while this is abundantly true when it comes to irons, I’ve often thought there was more wriggle room when it came to woods.
Mizuno say their MP-650 woods are 'Tour-ready' and that may well be the case, but I can report that for anyone with a tendency to draw the ball, these are impressive.
My card-wrecking shot tends to come off the tee or on long approaches that require a 3-wood or a 5-wood – low and left is the order of the day, but the MP-650 sits slightly open so this does give me more of a margin for error.
The woods appear a good bit more compact than lots of others on the market at the moment, and while this may not be ideal for those golfers wanting something sizeable at address, I was more than happy with the neat design, especially off the tee.
The all-black finish screams class too. And despite its size, the fairway wood offers more forgiveness than you may think – the lack of an alignment aid will undoubtedly scare a few golfers off, but if you’re semi-confident in your alignment process I don’t really see this as an issue.
I also noticed I got decent results when the ball came off the upper part of the face. Mizuno say they have improved the stability on the vertical MOI and their internal testing has seen a 21 per cent improvement over its predecessor. It should be pointed out there is no adjustability on offer with the MP-650 woods and in this day and age of wrenches and changeable angles, this seems a missed opportunity to me.
Ultimately, if you get yourself properly custom-fitted for one of these, you’ll be impressed with what’s on offer. The fairway woods sit in a family alongside a driver and hybrid which again will appeal to better players. Both are slightly smaller than some of the other offerings but, like the fairway wood, there is still a degree of forgiveness.
“Mizuno's fairway woods have always had a high pick-up rate on the Tour," says Andy Kikidas, Mizuno’s Tour Operations Manager. "But at Q-School in Spain it was clear the MP-650’s have really gone up a level in ball speed. Combine that with a workable shape that our players themselves had input with and there will be plenty of these in bags in 2012."