ST 2702 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2702

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2702

A full review by gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Morning All! – I nearly missed this having got mixed up on review weeks and puzzles so solved it last night (Wednesday) and found it excellent!.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.  You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


7a           On course, performing relatively well or rather poorly? (5,3)
BELOW PAR – Two definitions: On a golf course being BELOW Par means playing better than your handicap (i.e. doing relatively well). In medical terms it is quite the opposite (feeling pretty poorly)

9a           Jack’s appearing in operatic part in Lawrence’s place (6)
ARABIA – Your AB (abbreviation for Able Bodied (seaman) inside an ARIA or operatic part. q.v. Lawrence of Arabia.

10a         Some tigers at zoo not the real thing (6)
ERSATZ – Hidden in (some of) tigERS AT Zoo.

11a         Rip off, in a word, someone who’s reckless (8)
TEARAWAY – Split as (4,4) it means rip off (e.g. a hand towel from a dispenser). When combined into one word it is a rapscallion.

12a         For example, football magazine’s linked with Liverpool, say (9,5)
SPECTATOR SPORT – A charade of SPECTATOR’S (the magazine with the apostrophe ‘S and then PORT, of which Liverpool is an example (indicated by say)

15a         Island with a lot of dance (4)
BALI – Most of a BAL(l) with I for Island following. This is an all-in-one clue that didn’t quite hit the spot for me as the construction led me to I BAL. Thoughts from everybody welcome – I may have misread things.

17a         What’s repeatedly found in grizzly bear, possibly, or other wild animal (5)
ZEBRA – Start with the only double letter (found repeatedly) in griZZly then add an anagram (possibly) of BEAR.

19a         Flamboyance — it’s not a word that can be seen in this clue (4)
DASH – Or Élan, verve. The hyphen or DASH ( – ) is the only symbol in the clue which is not a word. I liked this!

20a         Western crew showering after time for strenuous exercise (6-8)
WEIGHT-TRAINING – W for W(estern) then an EIGHT as a team in rowing followed by T for Time then RAINING (showering).

23a         Wrongly perceived young woman in front of crowd, speaking (8)
MISHEARD – A homophone of MISS HERD (a young woman in front of (I’e before in an across clue) a mass or crowd.

25a         Interfere with person who’s entitled to hold key (6)
NOBBLE – Nobbling a racehorse or the opposition via subterfuge. The musical key of B inside a NOBLE (some person who has a land title and so is ‘entitled’).

27a         Scotch is what drunken revellers try, initially (6)
THWART – To scotch or dash a plan. An anagram (drunken) of WHAT followed by the initial letters of Revellers Try.

28a         Remove two wives, with a third mistreated inside (8)
WITHDRAW – W and W (two wives) with an anagram (mistreated) of A THIRD in between (inside).


1d           European carried by rail coming to Paddington, say (4)
BEAR – E for European inside BAR for rail/rod.

2d           Pieced together picture of ancient lawgiver (6)
MOSAIC – A Roman picture comprised of small pieces and also an adjective describing Moses who brought down the Ten Commandments from a mountain according to the Old Testament.

3d           Misbehaving youngster, intermittently aberrant (4)
BRAT – The even (intermittent) letters of aBeRrAnT.

4d           Caught, unfortunately, outside one Channel port (6)
CALAIS – C for Caught as a cricketing abbreviation and then ALAS (unfortunately) around the outside of I for One.

5d           I pardon a wrong, harbouring unreasonable suspicions (8)
PARANOID – An anagram (frong) of I PARDON A. Remember kids, just because you are paranoid it doesn;t mean that there AREN’T people out to get you!

6d           Politically co-operative oil company retaining current skilled worker (10)
BIPARTISAN – BP (British Petroleum) with I inside (retaining the SI Unit for Current, I) then add ARTISAN for a skilled worker – B (I) P ARTISAN.

8d           Flamboyancy Scrabble player can never produce (7)
PIZZAZZ – A bit naughty but easy with the checking letters. Anyone who plays Scrabble knows that there are not 4 Z tiles.

13d         Kind of author that takes gamble with flier, originally (10)
PLAYWRIGHT – PLAY for Gamble and either of the WRIGHT brothers accredited with the first powered flight by a human

14d         Final notice about monarch’s round-the-world trip (5)
ORBIT – An OBIT(uary) or final notice of death in a newspaper) around the outside of R for Rex or Regina (king or Queen – monarch).

16d         Islander‘s at home, nursing his arm that’s broken (8)
IRISHMAN – IN (at home) containing (nursing) a broken anagram of HIS ARM. Our very own setter!

18d         Not for touching (7)
AGAINST – A lovely simple double definition.

21d         Sporting and jovial male also having aesthetic interests (6)
HEARTY – HE (male) with ARTY (having aesthetic interests).

22d         Insignificant type‘s critical comment on wine (6)
NOBODY – Split as (2,4) id defines a weak glass of red.

24d         Blue swallow (4)
DOWN – A neat double definition.

26d         Be first to play heavy metal? Doesn’t sound like it (4)
LEAD – To lead in a performance is spelt the same way as LEAD (the heavy metal Plumbum) but is pronounced differently so doesn’t sound like it.


Thanks to Virgilius for a fine puzzle. I will see you all next Thursday for a review of the ST from the 4th August


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