Review by LawOCG (with thanks):
Out of the packet the GOD Favored SST-729 looks pretty
unspectacular. It has a "TianJiao" Sponge which
must be around 45-47degrees! Its extremely firm to the
touch and immediately it gives off the feeling that it will be extremely stiff
and will have a flat feeling to it. The topsheet is of very nice quality
though. Its got almost no tackiness to it at all, its butter smooth to
the touch with a slight grippiness to it. It cant pick up the ball like other
729topsheets. This super hard sponge combined with a non tacky topsheet
is friendships attempt to make a " Both sides Loop Driver" rubber. Initial impressions and the heavy weight of the rubber makes me
abit sceptical about it.
First impressions on the table are pretty promising.
Counterhitting and blocking is pretty decent and a step
above the norm of 729's. Which puts it in the same league
as the Focus II and Faster III. The throw angle of the rubber
is slightly higher than normal so a little adjustment has to be made. I
must say, The perculiar combination of a very hard sponge along with a elastic
non tacky topsheet is very sensitive to the way you hit the ball. If you
tend to hit right through the ball without much grazing, then you will find
this rubber to be very stiff and slow. But if your strokes are well seasoned
and you hit through the ball with some topspin, you will see that its
quite devastating close to the table in this respect.
Playing the short game(dropshots, Chops, short pushes) is very
very good with this rubber just like all other 729's.
Everything is controlled and goes where you want it to go
with the amount of spin you want it to have.
Extremely heavy short pushes are effortless with this rubber. Ok.. Now for the looping. As Ive mentioned above different people
will have different opinions of this rubber due to their
strokes, that mainly being the FH/BH loop. As long as I
maintain that set 45Degree angle I can hit harder and
harder with no hesitation and the ball will have more and more speed
and spin accordingly. In order words theres no limit to how powerful your
loop can be.
Counterlooping with the SST seemed to be a a bit troublesome.
At about 1-2m back from the table the sponge has to come
into play when your going for the counterloop. The thing
is, when Im back away from the table counterlooping, the
SST is just dull and lifeless I have to hit much much harder than usual just
to make a decent shot. This is due to that EXTRA hard 45-47Degree sponge,
If it was softened up with a few sessions of gluing then It will probably
For loopers in general this is a O K rubber that is abit on
the speedy side. Its a great rubber no doubt, But there
are many other variants of 729 that perform just as well
or even better. IMO Loopers should use either the Higher/Faster
variants or the Focus2. Those 3 types perform better than the god
favored SST and are of much lighter weight. A interesting
note. If my eyes arnt lying to me, I would say that the GOD favored
sst-729 has the same sponge as the focus II but a few degrees harder.
The color is the same and the pores on the sponge are very fine which
is apparant on both rubbers.
Conclusion: Great rubber if you are a close to the table
looper that takes the ball early. If your thinking of
using this for Mid distance play and counter-looping. There
are better solutions.