NTSPP – 091 (Review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 091 (Review)

Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle – 091

A Puzzle by Gazza

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Gazza’s usual cheeky style and impecable worplay shines through once again in this crossword. Favourite clues are highlighted in blue.


1a Show one’s cards here fixing new time and place to ensnare Oriental (11)
{MANTELPIECE} – This place where cards may be displayed is an anagram (fixing) of N (for new) with TIME and PLACE around (to ensnare) the letter E (oriental).

7a Old soak starts to sing our praises (3)
{SOP} – Another word for an old soak comes from the initial letters of Sing Our Praises.

9a Uncompromising military man engaged in clear out (5)
{RIGID} – A word meaning uncompromising comes from the initials of an American soldier inside (engaged in) a word meaning clear out.

10a Rambling white rose, or … (9)
{OTHERWISE} – The definition is sneakily hidden as “or”. It comes from an anagram (rambling) of WHITE ROSE.

11a … performing well but soon to leave? (2,3,4)
{IN TOP FORM} – A phase for performing well might also describe the position of someone about to leave school.

12a Indian dish from east of Gujarati area (5)
{RAITA} – An Indian dish is hidden and reversed (from east of) inside GujarATI ARea.

13a Suck up to sleazy earl pinching geisha’s rear end (7)
{ADULATE} – A word meaning suck up to comes from a word meaning sleazy (as in a form of entertainment for grown ups) followed by an abbreviation for Earl inside which (pinching) is put the last letter of geisha (rear end).

15a Multiple crash site? (4)
{DORM} – A cryptic definition of where many people may sleep (crash).

18a Great confusion in city centre (4)
{EPIC} – A word for great comes from a printers word for confusion inside the postcode for the City of London.

20a Supreme young goddess succeeded in island contest (3,4)
{THE BEST} – A phrase meaning supreme comes from the name of a young goddess followed by the abbreviation for succeeded all inside the name of a race held on the Isle of Man.

23a Walker’s exultant here when red light’s visible (2,3)
{ON AIR} – If you are exultant you might be described as walking ** / ***. It is also a description of what a red light indicates in a TV or radio studio.

24a Hampers and contents on display in Fortnum & Mason (9)
{AMPERSAND} – The name of the typographical symbol on display in Fortnum & Mason forms part of the contents of hAMPERS AND.

26a Acts to illustrate nominal gift (4,5)
{BOOK TOKEN} – A gift given by someone who does not have enough imagination to think of a useful present for you comes from what Acts is an example of in the Bible (to illustrate indicating definition by example) followed by a word meaning nominal.

27a I’m after a filling sandwich for something to eat (5)
{BALTI} – Another Indian food comes from putting an A inside (filling) the name of a type of sandwich containing bacon, lettuce and tomato followed by an I. The grammatical reading of the wordplay is not quite correct here as the wordplay should read “The letter I is after” not “The letter I am after”.

28a Hear four or five points (3)
{TRY} – A word meaning hear (as in a trial) is also what leads to four or five points depending on whether one is playing rugby league (4) or rugby union (5).

29a Bottom-up preparation? (11)
{SUPPOSITORY} – A cryptic definition of a medication (preparation) that is inserted into the rectum (bottom-up).


1d Cut up butter to reduce bits in a new paste (8)
{MARZIPAN} – This yellow confectionary paste comes from reversing (cut up) an animal that might be described as a butter followed by a computing term meaning to reduce the size of a file (reduce bits in) followed by an A and an N for new.

2d Oughtn’t I to reschedule trip abroad? (5,3)
{NIGHT OUT} – A trip abroad (maybe spent on the town) comes from an anagram (reschedule) of OUGHTN’T I.

3d Eventually reach winning position after goal (3,2)
{END UP} – A phrase meaning eventually reach comes from a word meaning in a winning position after a word meaning goal, aim or objective.

4d Forward sizeable European bid (7)
{PROPOSE} – A word meaning bid comes from another name for a forward in a rugby team followed by an abbreviation for something sizeable and an abbreviation for European.

5d Surfaced for another look? (7)
{EXHUMED} – A cryptic definition having opened and removed a body from a grave for a re-examination.

6d Textbook’s available following gaffe (5-4)
{ERROR FREE} – Textbook defines not a physical item here but an example that is perfect. It comes from a word meaning available (as in unoccupied) after another word for a gaffe or mistake.

7d Genie in bottle? (6)
{SPIRIT} – Something found in a bottle may also describe a genie (and be where it is found).

8d Gross Pierre’s ready with a kiss (3-3)
{PRE-TAX} – A word meaning gross (in contrast to net) comes from the French (Pierre’s) word for ready (think of the sandwich chain) followed by an A and the letter that represents a kiss.

14d A British soldier engaged in exercises with American kit (9)
{APPARATUS} – A word for kit comes from the letter A in the clue, a word describing a British soldier inside an abbreviation for exercises followed an abbreviation for American.

16d Quarter of wives could be gaolers I fancy (8)
{SERAGLIO} – Crosswordland’s favourite word for a harem comes from an anagram (fancy) of GAOLERS I.

17d Like a fuddyduddy media chief blocks work in Seychelles (8)
{STODGILY} – A word meaning like a fuddy-duddy comes from putting the initials of the head man in the BBC (media chief) inside (blocks) a word meaning work and putting all of this in the IVR code for the Seychelles.

19d Far from cheese’s leading attribute (5,2)
{CHALK UP} – A word meaning attribute comes from something far removed from cheese according to the saying followed by a word meaning leading.

20d Exploit volunteers on horse (3,4)
{TAP INTO} – A phrase meaning exploit comes from the usual definition of volunteer soldiers followed by the name of a type of horse so named for its piebald colouring.

21d Ice hardened around globe (6)
{SORBET} – This type of ice eaten as a dessert or a starter comes from a three letter for hardened around a three letter word for a globe.

22d Hood in Africa no pygmy, apparently (6)
{CANOPY} – A word for a hood is hidden inside (apparently) afriCA NO PYgmy.

25d Chatter’s curtailed when teacher appears (5)
{RABBI} – A teacher of the Jewish faith comes from a word meaning chatter with the final letter removed (curtailed).

7 comments on “NTSPP – 091 (Review)

  1. One of those puzzles where you laugh out loud a lot and then wonder how someone is going to illustrate 29a. Thanks to Prolixic for the review and thanks again (it must be the third time now :) )to Gazza for a very nice crossword.

  2. The first time I’ve tackled an NTSPP and I’m certainly glad I did, thoroughly enjoyed the experience favourites were 9a 29a and 7d thanks to Gazza and to Prolixic for the notes.

  3. Nice one Gazza – enjoyed it a lot so many thanks! It made a pleasant interlude this afternoon while the rain was bucketing down.
    Thanks to Prolixic as well – like the piccy at 20a!

    BTW, you’ve spelled the answer to 1a wrong, which is exactly what I did while solving which didn’t help a lot with 3d!

  4. Thoroughly enjoyable & amusing as we have come to expect from the Gazza man. Thanks to he & to Prolixic for the review.

  5. Bits of this I found quite tricky, but all fairly clued. Thanks to gazza for a fun puzzle, and to Prolixic for the notes.
    I thought 27a was ok, as I read ‘I’ as ‘ego’ rather than the letter ‘I’

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