With the announcement of the new conforming grooves, many average golfers seem to have forgotten the fact that they can play the old style aggressive grooves until 2024. For those of us unable to create Mickelson-esque levels of spin, using the older grooves makes perfect sense especially given the real performance difference in less than perfect conditions. You don’t even have to be in the rough as even a damp fairway will see a noticeable drop in spin rates with the new grooves with an associated loss of control.
If you could create the ideal wedge to take advantage of these old grooves you would without doubt choose a wedge that would play as well for a professional as for an amateur, one that looked as good as it performed and felt even sweeter. If such as wedge was also forged in Japan, you would surely be on to a winner. Step forward the YuRuRi KM0107 wedge.
YuRuRi wedges are forged by the world famous Kyoei forging house, also home of the fantastic Vega wedges we reviewed a while ago. You know exactly what you are getting: top quality wedges made from the best materials using the latest know how. Bag Chatter got to spend a few weeks with the wedges to see how they really performed.
The first thing you notice is the milling on the face. To say that the face of the YuRuRi KM0107 is intricately milled is an understatement. I’ve only seen more delicate work on a Purdey shotgun. Unlike most milled wedges the face milling continues out onto the toe so that the entire face is roughened and the grooves look as wide as tractor tyres. Even a quick glance shows you that these are going to impart a truck load of spin onto the ball.
With the stunning brushed satin finish any glare is muted and you can get on with playing the ball without distraction. More than any other club, higher lofted wedges are far more prone to suffer from glare when the sun is low and brushed satin finishes like this really help in these situations. The all around quality of the club is superb: the paint-fill, the finish, how the ferule merges with the hosel, all are top draw. This level of craftsmanship even extends to the loft and lie angles as our two test wedges matched the specifications exactly which is not as common as you may think.
At first glance the sole is a more traditional flatter style rather than a heel and toe C grind that we are starting to see in many wedges but it actually has a reasonable camber from front to back and front heel to toe. The the top line looks thin at address but the solidity to it indicates that the feedback level is going to be high and allied to the long hosel says that the COG is very high on the face: exactly what you want in a wedge to really generate a lot of spin. The leading edge is pretty straight and sharp without looking like it would dig. At address this all comes together into a very tidy package.
Pitching and chipping are where these clubs earn their keep. Those times where you’ve missed the green and need to get up and down to protect your score. Pitching is phenomenally easy: the trajectory is consistent, the feel superlative and the spin levels out of this world. The deep grooves and exaggerated face milling are more than a cosmetic effect as pitches grab so much you swear you can see little anchors being thrown out of the ball as it hits the green. Flop shots require the ball to be sitting up a little but again the vicious spin means that the ball will stick where it lands. There is almost no difference in playing from a perfect lie to light rough, it’s only when you are playing from heavier rough that you start to spin the ball less and even then it’s only by a small amount
When you do chip or bump and run, you’ll need to make a more aggressive stroke than normal since the spin levels are apparent even when you don’t compress the ball. This is true for both premium and distance balls but the premium balls obviously bite faster. The ball will check up a good few feet earlier than normal so remember to commit to the shot. The sole grind does help when chipping as it adds stability as the club goes through the turf.
The medium bounce means you get some help with bunker shots and does well in softer sand but opening the face on firmer sand requires some finesse. If you do choose to hit full shots, you might need to consider what danger is at the front of the green as a full strike generates so much spin that players who are naturally high spin will see the ball drag back a fair distance. You’ll also want to stock up on balls since the aggressive grooves shred the balls at more than 3/4 shots.
It might sound a little ungrateful but the amazing amount of grip exerted on the ball by the combination of grooves and milling makes pitches and parachute shots almost too easy. You want to throw the ball in the air every time you pull the wedge out of the bag rather than take what might be the more sensible option and play a lower running chip.
Killer looks and great performance, there has to be some draw back and in this case, it’s the price. At £154 it’s at the higher end of the price range but as always, you get what you pay for. The KM0107 reeks of quality and there is nothing that it can’t do. It is one of the best wedges we have seen. If there were only a more versatile sole grind, it might be perfection. If you are a player that demands nothing but the best then these wedges should undoubtedly be on your short-list.
For more information visit www.madeinjapangolf.com