eMail Us On Facebook

The Match Up (BYR)
Review Date: 4 November 2017

Reviewed by:
Storm/Roto Grip staffer John Brockland
Style: Stroker Rev Rate: 280-310
PAP: 5.50" over and 1" up

The MATCH UP SOLID has become a favorite of mine for medium volume patterns as well as for most instances of typical house shots here in the STL where there is little to no width or volume to the pattern anywhere right of third arrow or where the wood surface in the traditional track area is so worn that even volumes of oil in that part of the lane make little difference after not too long. 

The MATCH UP PEARL, on the other hand, has never been a ball that has gone through the pins very well for me.  The original MATCH PEARL with the factory polish dulled slightly has proven much better for me.  So, I wasn’t sure quite what to expect out of this recently release MATCH UP Black-Yellow-Royal (HYBRID).

It features the same tweak on the Stinger core from the original MATCH series as its MATCH UP companions – a relatively simple symmetrical core shape.  Like the others, therefore, the RG is in the higher range at 2.57 and the Diff is 0.035.  The coverstock is the hybrid of the Reactor Solid and Reactor Pearl.

On my MATCH UP SOLID I went with a favorite pin under the bridge layout which I had a lot of success with on an old WIPE OUT of mind.  On this MATCH UP HYBRID I didn’t want more of the same, so I went with a standard pin over the bridge layout.  The Dual Angle System specs come to 60 x 5 x 40 with a balance hole to make it static legal 5” directly across from grip center which puts it almost on my VAL. 

For the most part, the ball performs exactly as one would expect in comparison to its companions in the series.  It has more length than the polished solid and reads a bit sooner than the pearl.  With the layout I used on mine the MATCH UP HYBRID produced a nicely defined shape in its move off the break point.  What I notice most about it is that with the high pin layout I chose, the 2.57 RG of this ball really becomes evident.  On typical house shots here in the STL, where there is a pretty good puddle of volume deep in the middle of the lane left of 18-board or so, I find that the MATCH UP HYBRID is strong enough that it still forces me to play left of the track but starting in that heavy volume in the middle of the lane any shot that is missed at the bottom at all really will struggle to pick up through the midlane.

I haven’t had opportunity to bowl any house shot tournaments since the release of this ball last week, but my intuition is that the MATCH UP HYBRID with its high RG characteristics may prove helpful in the latter half of most 8 or 10 game tournament formats around town when getting the ball down the lane with enough stored energy is always the biggest challenge for an older guy like me with medium to soft ball speed.

All in all the MATCH UP SOLID could prove a reliable mid-performance range ball for any bowler who is graduating from entry level equipment and working on improving their game.  I would suspect that some really speed dominant players or bowlers with lower rev rates might find that it doesn’t quite pick up and roll well enough for them.  They might find themselves handcuffed with it --- not quite being able to play direct with it but having it go too long and not cornering enough after moving left.  Higher rev players with firm ball speed would probably want to knock the surface down so it doesn’t scoot too easily past the break point for them on less than perfectly thrown shots.

Lbs. RG Diff. PSA  Diff. 
16 2.56 0.034 N/A
15 2.57 0.035 N/A
14 2.59 0.036 N/A
13 2.59 0.045 N/A
12 2.65 0.035 N/A
11 N/A N/A N/A
10 N/A N/A N/A