donic-spike-p1-p2-pic4Donic has recently (2015) released two new long pimple rubbers, the Spike P1 and Spike P2. Below is a detailed review of these two new long pimple rubbers, outlining the main characteristics, comparing them to either other, and comparing them to other well known long pimple rubbers.

These rubbers were developed with the help of WANG XI and MASATO SHIONO, both high level long pimple players and sponsored by Donic.

Here are the descriptions from Donic:


donic-spike-p1_20141125_1335293556DONIC Spike P1 is a classic defensive pimpled rubber designed for the ambitious, technically advanced defender.

The ribbed pimpled top surface makes possible a vast array of variations of play and extreme backspin.

Even when a thinner sponge is used, the defender has the ability to vary the degree of spin up to maximum rotation.

This rubber has been developed in close association with WANG XI, one of the best German Bundesliga players for many years.


  • donic-spike-p1Medium hard sponge
  • elastic pimple rubber mixture
  • extreme backspin
  • especially designed for the classic defender
  • good for attacking play
  • Sponge: without sponge, 0,3 – 0,6, 1,0 – 1,3
  • Sponge hardness: medium
  • Top surface: long pimples
  • Art-no.: 000278


donic-spike-p2_20141125_1560268486DONIC Spike P2

This long pimpled rubber owes its unique playing qualities to a combination of an extremely soft sponge and the specially developed long pimpled top surface.

Spike P2’s soft sponge increases control when backspinning close to the table and facilitates surprise attack and variation, which can disturb the opponent. The specially designed structure of the pimples makes it possible for the modern defender to employ all the strokes necessary for top play.

This new rubber was developed together with MASATO SHIONO from Japan, one of the best defenders in the world.

  • donic-spike-p2Unique soft sponge
  • Specially structured long pimpled to surface rubber
  • Best possible control
  • Good for defence and backspin close to the table
  • Specially designed for the modern defender
  • It is possible to block topspin close to the table
  • Sponge: without sponge, 0,3 – 0,6, 1,0 – 1,3
  • Sponge hardness: soft
  • Top surface: long pimples
  • Art.-no. 000279

Visual Inspection:

I chose two OX (no sponge) sheets to allow me to compare the characteristics of the pimple, without the influence of sponge. Although these were samples sheets and without the carton packaging, I could tell they were high quality sheets. Since they’re made in Japan, that is to be expected.

The sheets came with glue sheets attached, as is common with most Japan-made sheets. Here are are few close-up pictures, click on the pictures to zoom in further:






The glue sheets were well attached and very sticky, making it easy to apply to the blade. The blade I glued them onto was the Victas Koji Matsushita blade, one of the top modern defender blades used by several top players. This blade was also used by Masato Shiono for quite some time, although now that he’s sponsored by Donic, according to the interview with Masato Shiono, he’s now using the Donic Defplay Senso, also a high reputable blade.

Note: It’s wise to seal a blade before attaching a rubber with a glue sheet, as strong adhesion can make it hard to remove.


From visual inspection we can see that both rubbers have a horizontally arranged pimple structure, both with the same medium density spacing. As you can see from the close-up pictures above, the pimple have rough tips. The only noticeable difference between the two was that the Spike P2 has a re-enforced base (tapers out at the bottom where it’s attached to the base-sheet), which usually makes the pimples a little stiffer. From running my fingers over the pimples, I could not tell little difference in grip or pimple hardness, so I expect the main difference will be in the rubber composition, which can only be discovered from play.


Chopping against loops (away from the table)

Chopping against loops worked very well, both returning high levels of backspin. The Spike P1 produced a flatter, faster and deeper trajectory and felt less affected by heavy topspin. The Spike P2 seemed to grip the ball a little more and had a softer feel, producing shorter balls with more backspin, but it was a little harder to keep low. With only a few hits of practice, I had little trouble adjusting to either one of them, so they are relatively forgiving long pimples.

Both produced enough backspin to trouble a spinny looper, and spin variation was fairly easy to do as both get decent grip on the ball. The addition of a sponge will make this much easier and can potentially produce more backspin. As with all long pimples, good hand-speed is required to get good backspin, and both rubber really rewards this, especially the P2.


Blocking against loops (close-in)

Passive blocking (no movement on contact) against topspin was quite easy and produced a short ball with slight backspin. The trajectory was a little high, the p2 slightly higher than the p1. Both rubbers absorbed the pace quite well, and there was little difference between them.

More active blocking (chop-block) produced short and heavy backspin balls, and were very effective and dangerous. Once again I noticed very little difference between the two Spike rubber, and both worked very effectively.


Pushing against backspin (close-in)

Aggressive pushing against backspin (‘pushblocker style’) produces a low ball with moderate reversal, enough to make it a viable stroke but without the high reversal that some rubbers (specifically for this style) can produce. A more appropriate blade that’s better suited to this style would make this more effective. The rubber grips just a little on heavy backspin, which helps give you control and keep it low.


Attacking backspin

Both the Spike P1 and P2 were very effective for attacking backspin balls. They both had just enough grip to grab the ball and enough reversal to turn them into topspin and land. Even no-spin ball, which are usually hardest to attacking with long pimple, were easy to attack. The addition of a sponge will make this easier.


Attacking topspin

Well most long pimple are not very effective at attacking topspin, and the Spike was no different. You can certainly counter-hit a topspin ball, but the reversal to backspin makes it harder to land, so you can attack too hard. Only with a very wristy shot can you create a little topspin to return a fast topspin ball. The addition of a sponge makes this stroke much more viable.


Effect of adding sponge

Adding a sponge obviously changes the rubber characteristics a little, which I have not yet tested. However having played with long pimple with and without sponge, I have a good grasp on on both, and can offer some insight on how it affects the performance.

The relatively hard sponge on the Spike P1 will enhance it’s chopping performance, allowing it to return very high backspin even against the hardest loops. It also enhances the attacking abilities, allowing a fast surprise counter-attack as the pimple grip the ball enough to create some topspin. This suits the style of Wang Xi perfect. You can see a video of his style below:


Adding the very soft sponge to the Spike P2, allows better generation of spin on the short game and softer balls, as well as high backspin against harder loops.Even with a sponge, blocking in-close can be very effective, as the soft sponge will bottom out against loops, producing a heavy backspin ball that’s harder to attack.

Masato Shiono, recent playing with the famous TSP Curl P-4 Chop rubber which also has a very soft sponge, is a perfect match for this, so I’m not surprised he’s been involved in the design of this rubber. Here is a video of Masato Shiono, playing the same opponent (Timo Boll) as in the video above.



It’s great to see two new long pimple rubbers from Donic, especially since they are created with guidance of two such great level long pimple players, Masato Shiono and Wang Xi.

Both rubbers are of very high quality and made in Japan. The Spike P1 with a sponge is ideally suited to the more classic defense, although surprise attack are certainly viable. Heavy backspin and variation of spin against strong loops is it’s specialty.

The Spike P2 with it’s very soft sponge allows the generation (not just reversal) of very good spin even in the short game, as well as the ability to attack short & softer balls. Blocking at the table is a viable option too. This rubber is also excellent for a chopper, but offer a few more options in close.

Happy to answer further question, please just ask 🙂

Donic Spike P1 and Donic Spike P2 are now from OOAK Table Tennis Shop here.