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Mizuno JPX-EZ Forged Irons: Guest Review

Guest Review By Derek Clements

THINK Mizuno and you automatically see an image in your mind of Luke Donald, hitting iron shots to three feet. Long irons, mid irons and short irons. It’s all the same to Donald. Six-time major winner Nick Faldo also used Mizuno irons during his prime. And he wasn’t too shabby with them either.

The company makes what are still arguably the best forged steel blade irons on the planet, but there is much, much more in its extensive bag of tricks.

Brilliant blades are all well and good if you happen to be a top-notch player, but they are unforgiving and that makes them entirely unsuitable for the vast majority of the golfing public. I was told that the JPX EZ forged iron is one of the best on the market, and I wanted to know if that was true, so I headed off to Mizuno’s fitting centre at Burhill Golf Club in Surrey.

There I met Nick Johnson, who asked me to hit 10 shots with my own six iron so that Mizuno’s all-singing, all-dancing hi-tech equipment could record how far I hit it, how much spin I imparted, clubhead speed and ball flight. I was presented with Mizuno’s Shaft Optimizer, which is a gadget attached to a shaft. Three swings later, Nick was able to identify the best shaft for me.

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With the help of world-renowned Trackman technology, Nick tried me with a number of other models, including the JPX 825 and MP-54. I struck balls with steel shafts and with graphite shafts, and he recorded the results, giving little away. Mind you, it doesn’t take a genius to work out when you have hit a good shot and when you have struck a poor one.
To be honest, I had a good idea that the JPX EZ with a Fujikura Orachi graphite shaft was probably delivering greater distance than anything else I had hit. It certainly felt more consistent than anything else.  It still came as a bit of shock when Nick confirmed this for me and revealed that, on average, I was hitting the ball ten yards further with the JPX EZ forged head-graphite shaft combination than with anything else I had hit.
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“Graphite? But, but, but…graphite is for old men,” I stuttered. And then I remembered. I am no longer in the first, second or third flush of youth. In any event, I could tell everybody that I was playing with irons fitted with “black steel” shafts.  Besides, an increasing number of players on Tour now use graphite shafts in their irons – Brandt Snedeker and Matt Kuchar spring to mind, and neither of those is too shabby.
And they did feel just right. The shafts are so light that you get lots of feedback from the clubhead. Quite apart from anything else, the heads are a thing of beauty. The black nickel finish is incredibly stylish and, let’s face it, matches my “black steel” shafts.  The irons have a deep centre of gravity to encourage high ball flight and multi-thickness face to encourage increased ball speed.
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This is how Mizuno market these irons: “Stay aggressive and go for the pins with the added feedback of a soft, solid Grain Flow Forged clubhead.”

The JPX EZ Forged delivers explosive distance, and the same effortless flight and tight dispersion of the JPX EZ series, but with the soft, solid feel of Mizuno’s exclusive Grain Flow Forging process.

“Attack the course. Play like you’ve never played before. Feel impact like nothing you’ve ever experienced.” Well, that was the theory at any rate.

In less than two weeks, my clubs had been delivered – I opted for four iron through to a pitching wedge, along with 50-degree, 54-degree and 58-degree wedges.

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Performance:

In truth, I couldn’t wait to try them out, and two days later I was standing on the first tee with the clubs in my bag. The opening hole at my course is a par three and when I pulled out the four iron, quick as a flash, one of my playing partners said: “Derek, since when did you start playing with graphite shafts on your irons?”

“They are not graphite shafts. They are black steel!” Seconds later, I didn’t actually care what the shafts were made of as my tee shot landed on the green, rolled gently and nestled some three feet from the cup.

To be honest, it was the highlight of the day. Because the shafts are so light (which is a good thing), that I was very aware of feeling precisely where the clubhead was at every stage of the swing. This was pretty disconcerting and the results were pretty hit and miss, although I fell in love with the wedges right away, especially the 58-degree wedge.

After a couple of rounds, however, everything changed. Suddenly, I felt completely dialled in to these incredible irons, and I just loved the fact that I was (and am) so in touch with the clubhead.

The ball travels further than it did with my traditional steel shafts, but I have made the conscious decision to use the club that I would always have used for a shot of 150 yards (a seven iron), but to swing more slowly, with more rythym. The result is more shots struck out of the middle of the club, with the ball going precisely where I want it to go – and I mean a LOT MORE shots out the middle of the club! Impact like I’d never experienced before, in fact!

NOTE:

For more talk and information about the Mizuno JPX-EZ Forged Irons click HERE

Written by BP Staff

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