ClubTest 2020: These 5 players-distance irons are packed with forgiveness

callaway mavrik pro

Callaway's Mavrik Pro offers game-improvement forgiveness in a more compact profile.

Callaway

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Golfers who fall into the 6 to 15 handicap range have likely moved on from a larger game-improvement (or super-game-improvement) profile and are in the market for a sleeker look. Workability enters the equipment lexicon. So, too, does control and optimizing carry distances. These also happen to be top priorities for the best players in the game.

So where does forgiveness fit into the equation? Before players-distance irons entered the gear arena, you had to sacrifice forgiveness when going to a smaller head profile. Thankfully, that’s no longer the case with many of today’s players-distance irons, which offer a sleeker profile with an abundance of miss-hit protection when you don’t catch the center of the face.

The latest edition of GOLF’s 2020 ClubTest spotlight highlights five players-distance irons with the kind of forgiveness you’d expect to find in a beefier game-improvement profile.

Callaway Mavrik Pro

Callaway Mavrik Pro

Designed to suit better players, the Mavrik Pro has a thinner topline, flatter lie angles (to reduce the left miss) and a more compact head.
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Set: 4-PW
Our take: Designed to suit better players, the Mavrik Pro has a thinner topline, flatter lie angles (to reduce the left miss) and a more compact head. Additionally, Callaway implemented its urethane microsphere to reduce vibrations and increase ball speed.
ClubTester’s take (12-hdcp): “Almost never turn the ball over with my irons. This did it on command. I’m sold!”
Robot’s take: One of the more forgiving irons in the category.

Mizuno JPX 919 Forged

Mizuno JPX 919 Forged

Heads are Grain-Flow Forged, but they have boron infused into the 1025 steel to make the face thinner and faster. There’s also a micro-slot behind the face to expand the sweet spot.
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Set: 4-GW
Our take: The JPX 919 Forged irons are designed to fit a wide variety of players. Heads are Grain-Flow Forged, but they have boron infused into the 1025 steel to make the face thinner and faster. There’s also a micro-slot behind the face to expand the sweet spot.
ClubTester’s take (5-hdcp): “Sets up great and offers the benefits of a player iron with forgiveness. Clean look.”
Robot’s take: Emphasize consistency? If so, this is your iron.

Ping i210

Ping i210

Designed to satisfy the player who wants feel and control but with the added forgiveness of a cavity-back construction.
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Set: 3-PW
Our take: Designed to satisfy the player who wants feel and control but with the added forgiveness of a cavity-back construction. The faces, grooves and back cavities of the irons are machine-milled for precision, and there’s an elastomer insert that sits behind the face to enhance feel.
ClubTester’s take (10-hdcp): “Impossible to miss your target line with this club. Just point and shoot.”
Robot’s take: High spin, launch and flight for players who need it.

TaylorMade P790

TaylorMade P790

The SpeedFoam-injected cavity increases speed and feel, while a tungsten weight lowers CG for a towering launch.
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Set: 3-PW
Our take: This iron offers a bevvy of technological innovations. SpeedFoam-injected cavity increases speed and feel, while a tungsten weight, positioned low in the club head behind the face, lowers CG for a towering launch. Responsive face forged from 4140 carbon steel brings the design together.
ClubTester’s take (13-hdcp): “Profile makes it look like I know what I’m doing.”
Robot’s take: A speed, carry and forgiveness winner.

Wilson D7 Forged

Wilson D7 Forged

Minimal offset and a thinner topline get paired up with a forged 8620 carbon steel face and urethane-filled holes in the sole of each iron head.
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Set: 4-PW
Our take: Minimal offset and a thinner topline get paired up with a forged 8620 carbon steel face and urethane-filled holes in the sole of each iron head. The result is an iron that not only looks but performs like a better-player offering.
ClubTester’s take (8-hdcp): “The best-looking iron I’ve seen from Wilson in some time.”
Robot’s take: Forgiving and consistent, with high spin and lower flight capabilities.

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Jonathan Wall

Golf.com

Jonathan Wall is GOLF Magazine and GOLF.com’s Managing Editor for Equipment. Prior to joining the staff at the end of 2018, he spent 6 years covering equipment for the PGA Tour.