NTSPP – 133

Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle – 133

A Puzzle by Gazza

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NTSPP - 133

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows.


8 Airline’s completely out of fruit for granny (4)
{NANA} – Take the name of a yellow curved fruit and remove the first two letters (which make up abbreviation for British Airways) to find another name for a granny.

9 French island’s against proposal for missile (10)
{PROJECTILE} – Another word for a missile comes from the French word for an island after another word for a proposal.

10 Republican mutual backing emerging for fall of Obama (6)
{AUTUMN} – Hidden and reversed inside the words REPUBLICAN MUTUAL is a word for the season known as the fall in America.

11 Effects of Christmas spirits mean no more for him? (8)
{EBENEZER} – A cryptic definition for the first name of Scrooge.

12 Someone missing rarely stays close to husband (8)
{MARKSMAN} – This person who rarely missed when shooting comes from a word meaning stays close to (as may be used in football) and a word meaning husband.

14 Pair of males succeeded on challenge number five (6)
{TESTES} – Something of which males have two comes from a word meaning challenge (as in an exam) followed by the fifth letter of the alphabet and the abbreviation for succeeded. Personal preference probably, but I am not a great fan of using a number to indicate the relevant letter of the alphabet.

16 Fret at limited view (4)
{SIGH} – A word meaning to fret at (or the sound make when one does so) comes from a word meaning view with the final letter removed (limited).

17 Half-heartedly secured what circus bird reportedly did for the fjords (5)
{PINED} – In Monty Python’s Flying Circus, the deceased parrot did this for the fjords. The answer comes from a word meaning secured with the double letter in the middle reduced to a single letter (half-heartedly).

18 Well regulated and enlightened broadcast (4)
{TAUT} – A word meaning well regulated sounds like (broadcast) a word meaning enlightened or educated.

19 Besotted with minor bodily expansion (2,4)
{IN LOVE} – Take the inner letters (bodily) of minor and expand them (or at least the final letter) to give a phrase meaning besotted.

21 Virtual fan has no right to fabricate complaint (5,3)
{AVIAN FLU} – An anagram (to fabricate) of VIRTUAL FAN gives the name of a medical complaint.

23 Breathless excitement but not a single winner (4,4)
{DEAD HEAT} – Take alternative words for breathless (as in deceased) and excitement (as in the XXXX of the moment) to give a phrase that indicates that there is not a single winner in a race.

26 Confectionery department came out with waffle (6)
{FUDGED} – A word meaning came out with waffle comes from the name of a type of sweet or confectionary followed by the abbreviation for department.

27 Head psychologist on TV gets bird (10)
{NUTCRAKER} – Take another word for head and follow this with the name of the TV psychologist played by Robbie Coltrane to find the name of a bird.

28 Do not pressure pretentious type (4)
{ARTY} – A word for someone who is pretentious comes from another word for a do or function from which the initial P has been removed (not pressure).


1 Volunteers built on a flawed arrangement (10)
{TABULATION} – The abbreviation for Territorial Army (volunteers) followed by an anagram (flawed) of BUILT ON A give a word meaning arrangement.

2 Ritual challenge from New Zealand overshadows north country horse festival (8)
{HANUKKAH} – The traditional Maori challenge (adopted by the All Blacks) goes around (overshadows) the abbreviation for north and UK (country) with a final H (abbreviation for heroin = horse) added to give the name of a Jewish festival.

3 Setter’s upset about £25 Hoover, say (6)
{EPONYM} – Brand names such asHoover or Biro that have become synonymous with the items that they represent as this word. It comes from reversing MY (setter) around the informal term for £25.

4 Churchwarden admitting love for single poet (4)
{POPE} – Take a word for which Churchwarden is an example and replace the I with an O to get the name of a poet. He was also the author of the phrase that runs around the perimeter of the crossword grid.

5 Dismissed judge on European court had a stash of grass? On the contrary (8)
{REJECTED} – Put the abbreviations for Judge, European and Court inside (stash) a word for grass to find a word meaning dismissed.

6 Pesters topless extras (6)
{OTHERS} – A word meaning pesters without the initial B (topless) gives a word for extras.

7 Irritating piles restricted movement on stage (4)
{PLIE} – An anagram (irritating) of PILE[S] with the final letter removed (restricted) gives a word for a ballet movement.

13 Spy tracked down in Japan (5)
{NINJA} – Hidden inside (tracked) DOWN IN JAPAN is a word for a spy.

15 Peer was first to have come to a similar conclusion (8,2)
{EQUALLED TO} – A phrase meaning have come to a similar conclusion comes from a word meaning peer (as in parity), a word meaning was first and the “to” from the clue.

17 Common biplane adapted to conserve energy (8)
{PLEBEIAN} – An anagram (adapted) of BIPLANE around the letter E (energy) gives a word meaning common.

18 One fated to turn out hopeless on pitch (4-4)
{TONE-DEAF} – A person who is hopeless at singing in tune comes from an anagram (to turn out) of ONE FATED.

20 American pack gets working-over (up top in the main) (2,4)
{ON DECK} – If you are up top on a boat at sea, you would be hear. Take a word for working and put this over the American term for a pack of cards.

22 Home venture’s faltering (6)
{INFIRM} – A word for faltering comes from a word meaning at home followed by another word for a business or venture.

24 Old case starts to exhibit the usual imperfections (4)
{ETUI} – The first letters (starts to) of Exhibit The Usual Imperfections gives a word for an old case used to hold needles.

25 What’s necessary in Bangladesh, thanks to Ford? (4)
{TAKA} – The monetary unit (necessary = cash) inBangladesh comes from a word meaning thanks followed by a make of Ford.

If you look around the perimeter of the grid you will see the phrase {THE PROPER STUDY OF MANKIND IS MAN}.


  1. crypticsue
    Posted August 25, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    The usual entertaining treat from Gazza Quite a lot of differences from the test version which meant that I solved it again before realising that I had seen it before. Thank you for giving me a second chance to be diverted from what I really ought to be doing.

  2. Prolixic
    Posted August 25, 2012 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    Excellent to see Gazza back in the setter’s chair this week with an highly enjoyable crossword and a Nina to put the icing on the cake. I will be back later with a review.

  3. pommers
    Posted August 25, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    Nice one Gazza! Much enjoyed :grin: so many thanks.

    Favourites were 14a, for its splendid definition, 18a and 25d.
    BTW, nice to see the old case coming out of retirement, not seen it for a long while!

  4. steve_the_beard
    Posted August 25, 2012 at 10:35 pm | Permalink

    Wow, what a Nina! Respect to Gazza!

    Prolixic, your analysis of 2D is excellent but your spelling isn’t, as you can see from the intersecting letters. The final letter is H for horse (as in heroin), and there’s only one N for North, and there are two K’s…

  5. 2Kiwis
    Posted August 26, 2012 at 2:17 am | Permalink

    Thanks for a wonderful puzzle Gazza. 14a beat us though. Bollocks!!!

  6. stanXYZ
    Posted August 26, 2012 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to gazza for the puzzle & Prolixic for the review. Well and truly beaten by this one.

    13d – do not understand how “tracked” indicates a hidden clue.
    19a – Despite the explanation from Prolixic – still do not understand.

    Amongst others – liked 23a & 27a.

    With regard to 14a – using “number five” to indicate “E” – BALLS! :wink:

    • stanXYZ
      Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      ps. 2d – Nice misdirection – it had to be Gymkhana! But, alas, No! Got the Haka bit! Couldn’t justify the rest of the wordplay – so just lightly pencilled it in!

    • pommers
      Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      I may be wrong here, and if I am then apologies to Gazza. I read this clue as the containment inticator being TRACKED DOWN, i.e found, but that means the word down is slightly doing a bit of double duty. Taking a bit of a liberty but I forgive – may also be wrong!

    • Jezza
      Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

      13d – One of many definitions of ‘tracked’ is travelled across, or passed through, or traversed.
      19a – The inner letters of minor are INO, which when expanded give IN O (love/nil/zero); iN LOVE

      Thanks Gazza for the puzzle, and Prolixic for the review.

    • gazza
      Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      The idea is that ‘challenge number five’ is Test E (after previous challenges A, B, etc.) In the same way George Osborne is constantly being urged to adopt Plan B (i.e. plan number two) after his Plan A has bombed.

      • pommers
        Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

        No probs with that one Gazza!

      • stanXYZ
        Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

        Thanks, gazza, Jezza & pommers! Crosswords! I think I’ve just plateaued(?) and I am now about to plummet!

  7. gazza
    Posted August 26, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Prolixic for the write-up and all who commented.