If an 8 wt was my heaviest rod and I wasn't planning on buying more than one or
two more, I 'd get a 10 wt, not a 9. This year I used a Sage VPS. It's old tech but
it seems rugged and casts well enough.
I would go for a two-hander if I already had a single-hander in the 9/10 range.
While I can cast a hell of a lot farther with a two-hander, especially in rougher
conditions, I find myself preferring to *fish* with a one-hander when it is possible
to do so.