10 Best Clay Court Tennis Shoes

Updated on: September 2023

Best Clay Court Tennis Shoes in 2023

ASICS Gel-Dedicate 6 Women's Tennis Shoes, White/Silver, 8.5 M US

ASICS Gel-Dedicate 6 Women's Tennis Shoes, White/Silver, 8.5 M US
BESTSELLER NO. 1 in 2023
  • Work on your backhand and serve in the full-match comfort of the ASICS® Gel-Dedicate 6 tennis shoe.
  • Made for the newbie recreational tennis player.
  • Breathable mesh, textile, and synthetic upper materials.
  • Lace-up closure.
  • Padded tongue and collar. Comfortable fabric lining. Molded foam footbed. Forefoot GEL® Cushioning System attenuates shock during impact phase and allows for a smooth transition to mid-stance. Trusstic System® reduces weight of the sole unit without sacrificing structural integrity. Solid rubber outsole. Imported. Measurements: Weight: 10 oz Product measurements were taken using size 7, width B - Medium. Please note that measurements may vary by size. Weight of footwear

ASICS Men's Gel-Resolution 7 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, White/Silver, 11 M US

ASICS Men's Gel-Resolution 7 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, White/Silver, 11 M US
BESTSELLER NO. 2 in 2023
  • Array

Babolat Men's Jet Mach II Clay Court Tennis Shoes, Dark Yellow/Black (Size 10.5 US)

Babolat Men's Jet Mach II Clay Court Tennis Shoes, Dark Yellow/Black (Size 10.5 US)
BESTSELLER NO. 3 in 2023
  • The Babolat Jet Mach II Clay is one of the lightest performance tennis shoes on the market. Babolat has added new technology to this shoe that increases support and makes the shoe feel lighter.
  • Matryx 2.0: zone woven ultra durable Kevlar and polyamide fibers
  • Stability Arch: Four rigid fiber reinforced straps wrap around upper
  • Cushioning KPRS-X shock absorbing system specifically designed for tennis movements

adidas Men's Adizero Club Football Shoe, Grey/Legend Earth/Tech Olive, 9.5 M US

adidas Men's Adizero Club Football Shoe, Grey/Legend Earth/Tech Olive, 9.5 M US
BESTSELLER NO. 4 in 2023
  • Lightweight, breathable shoes for the tennis court
  • Regular fit; Lace closure; Mesh upper for breathability
  • Sprintframe construction provides stability and speed through geometrical research to create a lightweight and supportive running chassis
  • Adituff for best abrasion resistance in the toe area; Adiprene+ in the forefoot maintains propulsion and efficiency
  • Climacool provides 360-degree cooling for the entire foot; Adiwear outsole offers the ultimate in high-wear durability

New Balance Men's 996v3 Clay Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Flame, 14 D US

New Balance Men's 996v3 Clay Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Flame, 14 D US
BESTSELLER NO. 5 in 2023
  • REVlite Midsole
  • PROBANK technology
  • Full Length Ndurance
  • Non-marking outsole
  • Removable insert

ASICS Women's Gel-Resolution 7 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, White/Silver, 8.5 M US

ASICS Women's Gel-Resolution 7 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, White/Silver, 8.5 M US
BESTSELLER NO. 6 in 2023
  • Flexion fit upper: proprietary upper which provides form fitting comfort without sacrificing support
  • Rear foot and forefoot gel cushioning systems: attenuates shock during impact and toe-off phases, and allows movement in multiple planes as the foot transitions through the gait cycle
  • Solyte midsole material: a lighter weight midsole compound than asics' standard Eva and speva. Also features enhanced cushioning and durability
  • Trusstic system technology: reduces the weight of the sole unit while retaining the structural integrity of the shoe
  • Pguard toe protector: enhanced toe durability

adidas Men's SoleCourt Boost Clay Tennis Shoe, Black/White/raw White, 11 M US

adidas Men's SoleCourt Boost Clay Tennis Shoe, Black/White/raw White, 11 M US
BESTSELLER NO. 7 in 2023
  • Clay court tennis shoes with a TPU chassis for a locked-in fit
  • Regular fit; Lace closure; Snug feel
  • Textile upper for soft comfort; TPU chassis for stability; Abrasion-resistant Adituff toe
  • Responsive Boost midsole
  • Durable Adiwear outsole

New Balance Women's 996v3 Clay Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Black, 10 B US

New Balance Women's 996v3 Clay Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Black, 10 B US
BESTSELLER NO. 8 in 2023
  • REVlite Midsole
  • PROBANK technology
  • Full Length Endurance
  • Non-marking outsole
  • Removable insert

ASICS Women's Gel-Game 7 Tennis Shoes, 9M, White/Silver

ASICS Women's Gel-Game 7 Tennis Shoes, 9M, White/Silver
BESTSELLER NO. 9 in 2023
  • Ortholite Sockliner - Moisture management (Ortholite is a registered trademark of ATP Manufacturing LLC).
  • Removable Sockliner - A sockliner which can be removed to accommodate a medical orthotic.
  • Forefoot GEL Cushioning System (COURT) - Attenuates shock during impact phase.
  • EVA Midsole -

New Balance Women's 996v3 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Pink/Pigment, 11 B US

New Balance Women's 996v3 Clay Court Tennis Shoe, Pink/Pigment, 11 B US
BESTSELLER NO. 10 in 2023
  • Synthetic/ Mesh
  • Tbd

The clay court tennis education of Milos Raonic, part one

After two Davis Cup wins on clay in Mexico City, Milos Raonic has had seven victories and five losses on the clay courts of Europe so far. His ranking has risen as high as No. 25, and he has had three notable wins over players ranked above him.

Not counting two Davis Cup singles wins on clay at altitude in Mexico City in March, Raonic has a record on the surface in 2020 of seven wins and five losses. These numbers are a far cry from the 16-5 mark he established on the hardcourts of Australia and North America to start the year, but after his three straight clay court wins in Estoril, Portugal in April, his ranking reached an all-time high of No. 25 before slipping back slightly in May to No. 28. With an overall match record of 23-10, Raonic has been seeded 26th in his first French Open.

Tough Losses to Four Veteran Clay-Courters But Also Three Big Wins

Raonic's results in Europe have been mixed, but his losses on clay have been to four clay court veterans, all ranked above him at the time they played, except Ivan Dodig (No. 56). Raonic lost twice to Fernando Verdasco, who must have taken special pleasure in the wins after Raonic had defeated him for the title in San Jose earlier in the year and then again the next week in Memphis. Raonic also lost to Spaniards Feliciano Lopez and David Ferrer. He also lost to the red-hot Dodig in the match following the Croatian's upset of No. 4 Robin Soderling.

However, Raonic's seven wins on clay this year have included notable wins over three players ranked above him at the time they met: Frenchmen Michael Llodra (No. 25) and Gilles Simon (No. 22), and Latvian Ernests Gulbis (No. 30). In each of the first three clay court tournaments of the season Raonic won at least two matches before losing, and he won three in Estoril before he was forced to retire with a back problem against Verdasco.

A good deal of Raonic's success on clay so far must be attributed to the experience of his coach, Galo Blanco. He achieved his greatest success as a player on clay, winning 17 of his 20 matches on the surface in 1997. Ina 1999 he won the title in San Marino on clay, and in 2001 he excused former world No. 1 Pete Sampras, then No. 4, from the French Open in straight sets. So he understands better than many what it will take for Raonic to succeed on the surface.

Galo Blanco's Task: More Aggression With More Patience

Just before the year's first clay court tournament in Monte Carlo, Blanco offered several important comments in an interview reported by Mark Masters of the Canadian National Post on April 9. Predictably, Blanco stressed that Raonic will have to construct the points more patiently on clay rather than relying primarily on his power to allow him to finish the points quickly.

Blanco said, "We've worked a lot on his patience and on working the point and getting his game ready to play one more ball." He added, "We are practicing longer rallies. When you play on clay, you can't expect to finish the point quickly. You have to expect the ball to come back one more time."

This observation elicited Blanco's most surprising comments about the strategy he is recommending for Raonic. Blanco continued, "He needs to go to the net more than even on hard courts, because if you play against players like [David] Ferrer or Rafael Nadal, the ball is always going to come back. I'm focused on having him be more aggressive than he is on hard courts, but with more patience."

More aggressive, but with more patience as well. Far from a simple recipe. But Raonic has already proven himself to be a quick study. The first time I saw him play in person in San Jose earlier this year against Xavier Malisse, a former Top 10 player himself, I was impressed by how well Raonic could construct points. Unlike many power servers with enormous forehands he did not go for broke at the first hint of an opportunity. His judgment has had as much to do with his sudden rise as his power.

Still the ATP Leader in Aces for 2020

Make no mistake about it, though, the power continues to make a difference. Raonic leads the ATP tour in aces as of May 16 with 438, an average of just over 14 per match. He hit 23 aces on the red clay of Madrid in his three-set loss to Lopez, who managed 12 himself. This match, too, was played at altitude, but the numbers were impressive nonetheless, coming as they did against another of the game's best servers (Lopez presently has the third highest number of aces on the tour this year with 335 and an average of 11.2 per match). American fans can take some solace in the fact that John Isner's average number of aces per match is higher than Raonic's (at 15.2), but Isner hasn't won enough matches to catch the overall leaders.

So how do we get a glimpse of how well Raonic's strategy of playing with both patience and aggression has been functioning? Statistically, the ATP does not keep figures on unforced errors versus winners or rally length or points won and lost at the net for each match. Broadcast teams and their research staffs can do it for individual matches, but unless you have a video of every point of every Raonic match this year, it's going to be tough to measure anything like winners versus unforced errors.

The Key Stat: Games Won Returning An Opponent's Serve

The one statistic kept by the ATP that correlates most highly with the top players' overall success and rankings is the number of games won returning their opponents serve. Of course this ability alone cannot guarantee overall success in terms of match wins; it must be complemented - or offset - by a decent percentage of service games won and break points saved. The higher the better, obviously.

But as one scrolls down through the statistics of games won on return of serve among the Top 100 players in the ATP's Ricoh Match Facts, the percentage falls tellingly and steadily from Novak Djokovic's and Andy Murray at the top with 43% and 42%, respectively, down through percentages in the twenties until at No. 24 (Michael Llodra) the percentage drops into the teens at 17%, followed by No. 26 (Sam Querry) at 18% and No. 28 (Milos Raonic) at 18%. We don't reach single digit percentages until No. 39 (John Isner) at 9%. But before feeling sorry for the 6'9" Isner, who wins nearly 90% of the games he serves, spare a thought for No. 150 Stephane Bohli of Switzerland who has won just 3% of his service return games all year.

During his matches on clay in Europe, Raonic won 27 of the 80 the return games he played in the seven matches he ultimately won, for a success rate of 34%. His percentage of second serve points won was also relatively high, ranging from a high of 51% against Sousa to 37% against Andreev. All good signs of improvement in this still developing part of Raonic's game.

However, his percentages returning serve in his five losses on clay this season stand in startling contrast to these numbers. He won only 5 of 54 games on return of serve in those matches, or 10.8%. His winning percentage on individual returns of second serve points ranged from 36% against Dodig to 23% against Verdasco. However these relatively high numbers are somewhat misleading because they did not lead nearly often enough to service breaks.

Raonic reached break point just 17 times in 56 games in the five matches he lost on European clay, fewer than once every three return games (and clay is universally acknowledged to be the easiest surface on which to break an opponent's serve). Raonic converted one of two break points in eight return games in his loss to Ferrer, three of eleven in his sixteen return games versus Dodig, zero for zero in six return games against Verdasco in their first rematch, one of two against Lopez in sixteen games, and zero of two in the second match with Verdasco in Rome. (Raonic saved eight of ten break points on his own serve in that straight set loss, but his inability to break Verdasco's serve on clay cost him the match.)

During his news conference on April 9 in Toronto before heading to Europe for the start of the clay court season, Raonic said. "It's going to take work, but the thing is with me work has never been an issue. It has never been an issue of putting in hours. I've never complained about it. I've just kept quiet and done it, because I know my team wants what's best for me."

Final Thoughts Heading into the French

In his most recent conference call with the press reported by Lori Ewing in The Canadian Press on May 19, Raonic said, "The body's good - nothing is really bothering me at all." And as for his mental state since the first round loss to Verdasco in Rome two weeks ago, Raonic added, " it let me refresh a bit and get a little bit more hungry." He noted, "being mentally prepared for everything is definitely a big part of it."

Raonic enters the French Open as a seeded player for the first time, and he is clearly looking forward to the whole experience, "I think it's more trying to enjoy it and trying to soak up the experience being my first time playing as a professional," he said. "I'm just looking to build off it, it's a starting point. . . and it's a Grand Slam, it's a big tournament."

Whatever happens on court, he concluded, "it's just going to add to the experience."

He faces No. 94 Michael Berrer of Germany, an opponent he has never played, in the first round and a potential match-up with Andy Murray in the third round if the form charts hold.

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