ST 2494 – Review – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2494 – Review

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2494 – Review

A full analysis by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

A good puzzle maintaining the standard set for the Sunday puzzles.


1a One of our Test opponents, unfortunately, is a natural (10)
AUSTRALIAN – one of our Test opponents in the Ashes is an anagram (unfortunately) of IS A NATURAL

6a Hostile takeover firm mounted (4)
COUP – a hostile takeover that is made up of CO (company / firm) and UP (mounted)

9a Sensible course to follow in cinema, we hear (10)
SOUNDTRACK – a charade of SOUND (sensible) and TRACK (course) gives the audible part of a film

10a Went down hill (4)
FELL – a double definition of went down and a hill

12a Demand part for twin sister (6)
INSIST – to demand is hidden in (part for) twIN SISTer

13a State carriage (8)
VICTORIA – a double definition of an Australian state and an old-fashioned low, light, four-wheeled carriage with a folding hood

15a Astronomical phenomenon – top celestial arrangement (5,7)
TOTAL ECLIPSE – this uncommon astronomical phenomenon is an anagram (arrangement) of TOP CELESTIAL

18a Are their customers more broad-minded? (6,6)
TRAVEL AGENTS – a cryptic definition based on the proverb “Travel broadens the mind”

21a Within plans we’re drafting, set out solution (8)
ANSWERED – within plANS WE’RE Drafting you will find the solution

22a Like seabird following in wake (6)
ASTERN – a charade of AS (like) and TERN (seabird) gives a word meaning at the back of a ship

24a Fail to stop thug (4)
GOON – to GO ON (fail to stop) combines to give a thug

25a Sole provider of amount of liquor fool’s swallowed (10)
FISHMONGER – a provider of sole and other fish is found by inserting SHMO (Yiddish for a stupid or a boring person, a fool) inside (swallowed) FINGER (amount of liquor)

26a Signalled disaster audibly had an effect (4)
TOLD – a word meaning had an effect sounds like (audibly) tolled (signalled disaster)

27a Closely follow error by group of students (10)
SLIPSTREAM – to closely follow is a charade of SLIP (error) followed by STREAM, a group of students following a particular course of study, usually of the same age


1d Positions on course airline set up, making rapid descent (6)
ABSEIL – combine LIES (positions of balls on a golf course) and BA (British Airways) and reverse all (set up) to get a rapid descent down a rock face using a double rope

2d Suppress activity in court (6)
SQUASH – a double definition, the activity being on a squash court

3d Is bloke imprisoned by Commies located again? (12)
REDISCOVERED – IS COVE (is bloke) inside (imprisoned by) RED and RED (two reds / Commies) gives a word meaning located again

4d Choice of numbers of Romans as ruler (4)
LORD – L (50) OR D (500) is your choice to get a ruler

5d He was barely able to announce his discovery (10)
ARCHIMEDES – this ancient Greek scholar proclaimed “Eureka!” when he stepped into a bath and noticed that the water level rose

7d Finished on poor horse last in race – past its best (8)
OVERRIPE – OVER (finished) on RIP (poor horse is) and E (last in racE) gives a word meaning past its best

8d Antiquated weapons of European alliances (8)
POLEAXES – these antiquated weapons are a charade of POLE (European) and AXES (alliances)

11d Problem for runner? Trainer’s got it covered (8,4)
ATHLETE’S FOOT – a disease of the FOOT that is associated with ATHLETES (problem for runner) is cryptically defined as an ATHLETE’S FOOT being covered by a training shoe (trainer’s got it covered)

14d Involved in running, a miler somehow concealing a worry (10)
MANAGERIAL – a word meaning involved in running a business is derived by putting an anagram (somehow) of A MILER around (concealing) A NAG (a worry)

16d Five to nine, for example? Right (8)
STRAIGHT – my favourite in today’s puzzle – 5,6,7,8 and 9 in a hand of poker (Five to nine) is an example of a STRAIGHT and the other half of this double definition is a synonym for right

17d Secures what worker needs to make pub furniture (3,5)
BARSTOOL – a good example of a charade – BARS (secures) and TOOL (what worker needs) makes an item of pub furniture

19d Long-distance partnership (6)
LEAGUE – a double definition – take your pick of long distances from the nautical league [1/20th of a degree, 3 international nautical miles, 5.556km (3.456 statute miles)], the Roman league [2.215km (1.376 modern English miles)], the French league [4.448km (2.764 miles)], the Spanish league [6.781km (4.214 miles)], or, in poetry, taken to be about 4.828km (3 miles)

20d North of border, a northern part of Ireland (6)
ANTRIM – North of  is a down-clue only construct meaning on top of, so put A N(orthern) on top of TRIM (a border of, say, lace) to get a county in Northern Ireland – I did wonder if the border should be rim, but that would require northern to be NT

23d A piece knocked off counter (4)
CHIP – a double definition – a piece knocked off the old block of wood or a counter used in a casino