Discontinued? Must be a reason for that. A $99 rod will more than likely perform like a $99 dolor rod. Yes it might get the job done but if your are interested in learning how to cast a double handed rod you need to do a little leg work first. But then it sounds like that is what you are doing. You don’t have to spend a grand on a rod but you do need to select the proper equipment if you want to have a positive experience. Learning how to cast the long rod is not easy especially when your equipment is poorly designed or miss matched. Don’t waist you money.