DT 26452 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26452

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26452

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

I’m pretty sure that this is a Shamus puzzle – it is a pangram which is becoming a trademark of his. It also has a mini-theme, with no less than four male names clued as representatives of European countries. However, I’m willing to bet that the clue attracting most criticism will be 23a, which is the name of a cricketer who was very famous in his day – but his day was a long time ago! Let us have a comment (on 23a or anything else).
To reveal an answer drag your cursor through the space between the brackets under the relevant clue.

Across Clues

1a  Discouraging sounds, we hear, getting drink (5)
{BOOZE} – we want an informal word for alcoholic drink which sounds like (we hear) the noise made by an audience expressing its displeasure.

4a  Syrup from Caribbean island largely in East (9)
{GRENADINE} – remove the final A from the name of a Caribbean island and add IN and E to make a pomegranate syrup. Knowing the French word for pomegranate (or the name of a small hand-thrown bomb which was named after it) will help.

9a  Brief rush to get changed and brighten up (9)
{REFURBISH} – a verb meaning to give a new lease of life to something (brighten up) is an anagram (to get changed) of BRIEF RUSH.

10a  Father taken in by message axeing principal person abroad (5)
{EXPAT} – this is a person living abroad. Put an informal word for father inside a modern form of message from which the initial T has been dropped (axeing principal).

11a  Excellent merit possibly in TV coverage? (7)
{AIRTIME} – an abbreviation meaning excellent is followed by an anagram (possibly) of MERIT.

12a  Last longer than striking flower (7)
{OUTWEAR} – a verb meaning to last longer (used of clothes or fabrics) is a charade of an adverb meaning on strike and a river (flower) in North-East England.

13a  Hurt among group of twelve? (6)
{INJURY} – a synonym for hurt could also, as (2,4), describe being one of a group of twelve people assembled to produce a verdict.

15a  Family about to forward first bit of sizable generosity (8)
{KINDNESS} – the definition is generosity. Start with a synonym for family, add a verb meaning to forward or transmit which has to be reversed (about) and finish with the first letter (bit) of S(izable).

18a  Crash of lone bus involving middle of bus? It’s unclear (8)
{NEBULOUS} – an adjective meaning unclear or hazy is an anagram (crash) of LONE BUS containing (involving) the middle letter of bUs.

20a  Greek and German found in cave (6)
{GROTTO} – this cave is a charade of the International Vehicle Registration code for Greece followed by a common German male forename.

23a  Noted cricketer excited crowd with extremes of energy (7)
{COWDREY} – this is the name of an England batsman (and captain) of the 1950s and 1960s. It’s an anagram (excited) of CROWD followed by the outer letters (extremes) of E(nerg)Y.

24a  Confession of spy? Something put in one’s mouth (7)
{IMPLANT} – something that may be fixed in your mouth by a dentist could also, as (1’1,5), be a confession of someone placed in a group as a spy.

26a  Delight recalling well-kept hotel (5)
{MIRTH} – reverse (recalling) an adjective meaning neat or well-kept and add H(otel) to make jollity or delight.

27a  Basically popular perfume (2,7)
{IN ESSENCE} – a phrase meaning basically or fundamentally is made up of words meaning popular or trendy and an extract or perfume.

28a  Loathsome born hater getting agitated (9)
{ABHORRENT} – an anagram (agitated) of BORN HATER means loathsome.

29a  Not all keep sombre in course (5)
{EPSOM} – in part (not all) of the clue is concealed the name of the Surrey racecourse at which the Derby is run every June.

Down Clues

1d  Locals taken with Scot, not a civilised sort (9)
{BARBARIAN} – for locals read local hostelries. We want two of them followed by a male Scottish name to make an uncivilised person.

2d  Tender Mercian King reportedly (5)
{OFFER} – an 8th century King of Mercia (best remembered for building a dyke) sounds (reportedly) like a verb to tender.

3d  Titled figure with support losing power previously (7)
{EARLIER} – the definition here is previously. It’s the title of a nobleman ranking above a viscount and below a marquess and this is followed by a supporting structure without its initial P (losing Power).

4d  One affected by moving air with good German songs, not English (6)
{GLIDER} – a machine that relies on air currents is made from G(ood) followed by German songs from which E(nglish) has been removed.

5d  A poet I fancy receiving greeting in country (8)
{ETHIOPIA} – this African country is an anagram (fancy) of A POET I which contains (receiving) an informal greeting.

6d  Made aware Welshman is entertaining Irish broadcaster (7)
{ALERTED} – we want a Welsh male forename (think of the young lad who came to fame in the 1980s with his cover version of Walking in the Air) and inside this (entertaining) go the initials of Raidió Teilifís Éireann.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

7d  Complete wrench maybe (9)
{IMPLEMENT} – double definition, the “maybe” indicating that wrench is an example of this.

8d  Record time held by upcoming Frenchman (5)
{ENTER} – a verb meaning to input (record) some data is T(ime) inside (held by) a French male forename reversed (upcoming, in a down clue). It’s time for the fictional café owner to make his reappearance.

14d  Petty official from Japan improvised short bow (9)
{JOBSWORTH} – this is an informal word for an official who sticks officiously to the rules rather than using common sense. Start with the IVR code for Japan and add an anagram (improvised) of SHORT BOW.

16d  Not looking ahead too much, what schoolchildren like? (5-4)
{SHORT-TERM} – double definition, the second cryptic.

17d  By the sound of it, important sporting group in part of harbour (8)
{QUAYSIDE} – this feature of a harbour is a homophone (by the sound of it) of an adjective meaning important or essential followed by a synonym for team (sporting group).

19d  Upcoming regulation almost caught woman’s dog (7)
{LURCHER} – a regulation or law without its final E (almost) is reversed (upcoming, in a down clue) and this is followed by C(aught) and a feminine pronoun (woman) to make a dog which is typically a cross between a greyhound and a collie.

21d  Answer I start to provoke inside versatile store (7)
{RIPOSTE} – put I and the first letter (start) of P(rovoke) inside an anagram (versatile) of STORE.

22d  Change the direction of seedy place above empty resort (6)
{DIVERT} – this is a verb meaning to change the direction of something. It’s a seedy place (an underground bar or nightclub perhaps) followed by the outer letters (empty) of R(esor)T.

23d  Cold rounds brought up as sign of short break? (5)
{COMMA} – a sign signifying a short break between clauses in a sentence, as used here for example, is C(old) followed by the contraction of a word for bullets and shells (rounds) which has to be reversed (brought up, in a down clue).

25d  Woman staying among champagne socialists (5)
{AGNES} – camouflaged (staying among) in the clue is a woman’s name.

I liked 24a and 14d, but my favourite clue today was 23d. Let us know what you liked in a comment.

51 comments on “DT 26452

  1. I am old enough to remember the cricketer so had no problems there. My favourites are the same as yours, Gazza – thanks for the review and thanks to Shamus (if he) for the entertaining crossword – I struggled a bit with the NE corner but a touch of Gnome’s Law soon made my mind work properly.

    The Toughie is particularly tough for a Tuesday Toughie – well I think so anyway.

    1. I agree with you about the Toughie Sue. A suitably taxing challenge. I guess it’s because of the nina. Despite the nina there weren’t many obscure words shoehorned into the solution, but some fairly obscure, to me, abbreviations, which I don’t mind in a Toughie, but I was glad to have my partner-in-crosswords there to fill in the gaps in my knowledge.

      Thanks also to Shamus and Gazza for the DT.

    2. Probably should post this in the toughie blog rather than here, but I always really struggle with it. I did the regular one in xx mins today as I did yesterday, but I’ve managed the sum total of one answer in the toughie in the same amount of time… When I read the blogs the clues always make sense but my brain just doesn’t get there on its own. Does anyone else have this gap? Any suggestions as to how to cross it?

        1. Yes – me!

          If you want to say it took over an hour, then that’s OK, but please respect that “bragging” can be very discouraging for many solvers.

      1. Keep practising! Also try looking at the clues, filling in what you can and then walking away from the whole thing for at least an hour before you have another go. It’s surprising what your subconscious will have worked out. Also try not to despair. I don’t believe the setters have gone to all that trouble for us not to be able to sort out and solve all their hard work. And just think how lucky you are to have access to this blog – trying to work these things out on your own can be very downheartening. As Mary would say , perservate on and you will get there.

      2. I’ve got some hints that I used to get into Toughie solving, Zak, but I’ll post them on today’s Toughie comments to save cluttering this space. I’d agree with Sue re practice and using the blog to help you. You could just dip into the blog on the day or the day after to help you with the odd clue as you get better then return when you get stuck again and after you’ve completed the puzzle. That way you’ll ratchet up you familiarity with the type of devices used in the Toughie, which make it harder to get started than many DT puzzles.

  2. Nice crossword from Shamus, enjoyable without being overtaxing. Agree with Gazza and Crypticsue re faourite clues. Thanks Shamus and Gazza. (I thought the toughie was quite doable with one or two corkers).

  3. No problems today. Even as a youngish Scot I have no complaints with 23a. 24a though..hmm, I don’t like first half of clue. Thanks to setter and Gazza again.

    1. As an elderly Scot I have no trouble at all with 23a, it does say England batsman rather than English.

  4. The cricketer was no problem at all and I have little doubt that most modern day solvers have heard of him. What threw me was the use of the Irish TV channel, can’t say I’ve had a lot of dealings in that respect.

  5. Without your help I was struggling. I had Leider for 4d which threw me for that corner of the grid. Managed to finish 52 seconds short of the target time, but was not awarded the bonus points. The scoring algorithm seems to think that 44min and 1 sec is equal to 45 minutes. DT know about the fault but haven’t got around to fixing it.

    1. I was on the same lines as you with the German song. It was the NE corner that I got completely stuck with, and even after reading the blog, I still didn´t like the clues. I don´t think I´ll even think about attempting today´s Toughie!

  6. Nice crossword with the inevitable caveat about the homophone at 2D, which only works for some.

    The pangram was subtly done, and it was an enjoyable puzzle.

  7. Once I’d realised the anagram, the cricketer was no problem, even for me! Needed the hints for about half-a-dozen and even then couldn’t finish two. Much more than ** for me and took a long while to get going. Can’t really point to any favourites, most of it was pretty hard work – will be in CC for ever I think!

    Thanks to Shamus and Gazza.

    1. That’s what I used to think Geoff, then one day………now to date I have completed 3 unaided, doesn’t seem much in 19 months or so but for me it is, so don’t give up :)

  8. Thanks to Gazza and Shamus. Very enjoyable – I got a few right answers before working out why they were right but no real problems

  9. Haven’t done puzzle yet, late today but on reading your comment Gazza on 23a, I found it one of the easier cricket clues, no complaints from me on that one :)

    1. Well, I was obviously wrong to think that 23a would provoke an outcry. Everyone seems to have become a knowledgeable cricket fan :D

      1. we will see what Kath has to say but I get a feeling she will be fine too! I know the older ones it’s the present day players I have problems with :)

      2. Yes but how many of us are admitting to knowing Colin rather than his two sons who also played cricket professionally !!

        1. I did consider mentioning that, but thought (obviously incorrectly) that that would be even more confusing. One of the sons, Chris, also played for England and captained them for one match, though that was probably down to the fact that the Chairman of Selectors was his godfather!

          1. I really can´t stand cricket but find it extremely amusing in a Bill Bryson sort of way. I do seem to always solve the cricket clues, which I find quite annoying given my loathing of the game.

  10. Thanks for blog Gazza, I found this a difficult puzzle to get into, but once I did it wasn’t too bad, I had to use books, machines and blog for explainations however, fav clues today 17d,16d and 27a

  11. Got 1a immediately, saw the Z and thought Tuesday -Shamus perhaps-pangram! Can’t say it helped much though!
    Enjoyed this one and, as I saw him play on numerous occasions, I had no trouble with the cricketer (showing my age here).
    Was aware of the Irish broadcaster as their channels are available here on the Costa Blanca.
    Thanks Shamus for an excellent puzzle.
    Gazza, thanks for the entertaining blog. I agree about 23d and 14d but also liked 10a as I am one.

  12. I seem to have done quite well today – even managed 23a without any trouble (or complaining) – his name just popped into my head and can remember his first name as well!! A knowledgeable cricket fan?? Perhaps not!! :grin:
    I enjoyed this crossword very much – lots of good things about it – plenty of anagrams which I always like, especially since Skoda were (was?) kind enough to put a big advert right next to the crossword so plenty of room for working them out!
    I spotted the likelihood of its being a pangram as soon as I got 1a so started to look for the other less usual letters.
    Needed the hint to explain the Irish broadcaster in 6d.
    Too many really good clues to pick them all out – maybe 24a and 14d as particular favourites today.
    Thanks to ?Shamus and Gazza for the hints (although not the vote of no confidence re 23a!)

  13. Many thanks to Shamus (if it were he) for an enjoyable crossword and to Gazza for the review. No particular favourites today, just good all round entertainment.

  14. I enjoyed this puzzle and completed it with little difficulty. I had no problem with the cricketer either; in fact, I found all the clues were well worded to enable solving the grid. Good to see reference to “Allo Allo” and yet another dog! Thanks to setter and Gazza for the review

  15. Thanks to Shamus for the fun puzzle, and to Gazza for the notes. Last one in 17d – if I had spotted the pangram earlier, I would have solved it sooner.

  16. Funny old puzzle today, bit like the Curates Egg. The left hand side was very nice, challenging but doable but I thought the right hand side was a total stinker!! Didn’t manage a single answer on the right although completed the left!!
    23a was quite simply one of the most beautiful batsman I have ever seen, he never hit a ball but simply stroked it to the far corners of the field, sublime!!

  17. Just seen the answer to 6d, OH COME ON!! What next the name of the TV company of Outer Mongolia!!

  18. The comments have been more fun to read than the actual puzzle! Not that I didn’t enjoy it, I did and finished without too much thinking but I love the furore caused by 23a! I.m no cricket fan but even I knew the name. Completely missed that it was a pangram. Anyway thank you Shamus and Gazza, well done, both of you

  19. Thanks to Gazza as ever for the blog and all for comments. Re 23a, hopefully CC has stood the test of time – and, on the same principle, eg STRAUSS may still appear in the DT crossword 30 years hence as a cricketer (as much as a composer!)

  20. Re; 6d, I agree with Barrie #18. Solved the clue by using the across letters and the first two words of the clue.
    Must ask GAZZA which recess of his mind did he have that bit of information (RTE) stored. Wonder how many other solvers new what the RTE element was.

      1. Thank you for that. Have to admit i’ve never heard of it and didn’t pick up on an Irish Radio Station, was looking more for a person. Thanx for the explanation.

  21. Just back … Very late as we went for weeks shopping .Good CW & hubby very surprised I knew C Cowdrey as iam not in the least interested in any Sport!

  22. Enjoyed today’s puzzle. Managed it without hints but took ages on top right corner as I answered 4d as leider before doing 4a which messed me up for a bit! Must learn to read clues and not jump in with my size 9s.

  23. Nice crossword I thought despite failing to get 24a (DOH!) and 17d (DOH! DOH!)

    Nice distration from the awful Central Line today.

  24. I am very late getting to it today and can’t say I really enjoyed it all that much. Can’t put my finger on why (possibly because it is so late) as I usually enjoy Tuesday’s puzzle. Didn’t know the cricketer – had to look him up. Looks like I am in a minority of one on this – always tomorrow!!!

    Thanks to Shamus and to Gazza.

  25. I really enjoyed this one, being a newbie it’s only the second one that I’ve solved without any assistance. However, I thought 12a was little unfair. It’s the answer that I put down, but I wasn’t aware of the answer being a word that is in regular use.

    1. Hi Cicero – welcome to the blog.
      Outwear means much the same as outlast, but is used for clothes or fabrics.

    2. Hello Cicero.

      If you’re new to cryptic crosswords, it’ll soon become clear that the solutions aren’t limited to everyday vocabulary. In fact, that’s one of the most important things to know. There are some words used in cryptics that rarely appear in most people’s day-to-day lives, but show up again and again in crosswords. PILASTER, for example, usually defined as “column”, or UR (“old city”).

      Similarly, familiar words appearing in crosswords often take on different meanings. Who, in real life, would use the word “flower” to mean “a river” (something that flows), or “winger” to mean a bird (something that uses wings)?

      Expect the unexpected!

    1. This was my last entry but only because I would not pronounce the “flower” to rhyme with WHERE but with WEIR!

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