ST 2729 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2729

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2729

A full review by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Lovely stuff as usual on a Sunday morning.  My top favourites were 10a and 14a.   If I had one slight quibble, it would be that I did have to type anagram quite a lot in this review.

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.


1a           Watches, for example, man in rival publication (10)
TIMEPIECES –   Insert a PIECE (sometimes known as a man in a game of chess) into the Telegraph’s rival publication, the TIMES.

6a           Starts off building line of command in multinational group (4)
BLOC –  Found by taking the ‘starts’ off Building Line Of Command.

9a           Fruit   bats (7)
BANANAS –   A popular yellow fruit or, in the same way as bats can sometimes be used, an informal word meaning  crazy.

10a         Small woolly jumper for cute infant (7)
LAMBKIN –    Double definition, the first one being a cryptic definition of a baby sheep which reminded me of Kath whose  daughters  are known as Pet Lamb 1 and Pet Lamb 2.

12a         Be embracing novel gold bar idea — as opposed to plastic, for instance (13)
BIODEGRADABLE –   BE from the clue embraces or has inserted an anagram (novel) of GOLD BAR IDEA.

14a         Serve two couples holding hands in a corner, finally (6)
ANSWER –   Serve here meaning to satisfy or suffice.  Insert NSWE (I loved the  splendid definition   for the pairs of players holding hands of cards in a game of bridge) between A (from the clue)  and  R (corner finally) .

15a         Dries out inside, not dry outside? Most odd (8)
WEIRDEST –   An anagram (out) of DRIES is placed inset WET (not dry).

17a         Leading men in awful cast I pan (8)
CAPTAINS –   An anagram (awful) of CAST I PAN.

19a         Cryptic in Telegraph I’d denigrated (6)
HIDDEN –  Brilliantly cryptically hidden in TelegrapH ID DENigrated.

22a         Place to find info, within a ship, on ammo (8,5)
BULLETIN BOARD –   IN BOARD (within a ship) follows (on in an across clue) BULLET (ammo).

24a         I can be found in trance — in altered state, for sure (7)
CERTAIN –   Insert I (I can be found) in another anagram (in altered state) this time of  TRANCE.

25a         Hint about one’s home cooking (7)
CUISINE –   CUE (hint) surrounding (about) IS (one’s) and IN (home).

26a         Doctor Who’s theatrical performance (4)
SHOW –   An anagram (doctor) of WHOS.

27a         Is single, occupying dull accommodation (10)
MAISONETTE –   IS ONE (is single) inserted into (occupying) MATTE (dull).


1d           Loud instrument makes neighbour upset (4)
TUBA –   A reversal (upset in a down clue) of a verb meaning to border (neighbour)  or be next to.

2d           Not positive about one British form of transport (7)
MINIBUS –  MINUS (not positive) with I (one) and B (British) inserted.

3d           Somehow reclaim a phone that can take pictures (7,6)
PINHOLE CAMERA –   An anagram (somehow) of RECLAIM A PHONE.

4d           Oriental cut European flower for festival (6)
EASTER –   Well there had to be one ‘chestnut’  – this one comes with the added bonus of two bits of wordplay to get to the same solution.   You can either remove the last letter from EASTERN (Oriental ‘cut’)  or you can combine   E (European) and ASTER (flower) .

5d           Grenade tossed over line blew up (8)
ENLARGED –   Sneaky use of grenade to mislead into the type of blowing up required here.   An anagram (tossed) of GRENADE over L (line inserted).

7d           Apt to embrace king that’s pleasant (7)
LIKABLE –   K for King is ‘embraced’ by LIABLE (apt to).

8d           One of those competing in uniform, including half of team (10)
CONTESTANT –   The first half of TEam  inserted into CONSTANT (uniform).

11d         Making new offence up, within reasonable limits (13)
MODERNISATION –   A reversal (up in a down clue) of SIN (offence) inserted into MODERATION (within reasonable limits).

13d         Reverses under shade in these vehicles (10)
HATCHBACKS –   BACKS (reverses) is placed under  HATCH (to mark with fine lines, shade in)

16d         Stars and stripes, say, taken back inside by certain GIs nightly (8)
INSIGNIA –   Hidden and reversed (taken back inside)  certAIN GIS NIghtly.

18d         Mate recollected Rome and another Italian city (7)
PALERMO –   PAL (mate) and an anagram (recollected) of ROME.

20d         Aesthetically unconventional daughter’s on a platform on time (7)
DADAIST –   D (daughter) A (from the clue) DAIS (platform) T (time).

21d         A Conservative using public transport? You can count on it (6)
ABACUS –   A C (A Conservative)  inside A BUS (so using public transport).

23d         Announced what’s going to happen to one charitable function (4)
FETE –   A homophone (announced) of FATE (what’s going to happen to one).

I’ll be back tomorrow with a review of last Saturday’s puzzle while Gnomey takes over Sunday duty for the next couple of weeks.

4 comments on “ST 2729

  1. Thanks to Virgilius for yet another masterclass in clue writing and to CS for the excellent review.

  2. Couldn’t agree more! A splendid Virgilliuscrossword and a splendid CS review. Much appreciation to you both.
    I’m enjoying it for a second time as I go through my copy here. My faves are 14a, 19a, 1d (made me remember Tubby the Tuba and Sparky’s Magic Piano and also 20d.
    As always, I found something I’d missed — failed to see 10a as a double definition. Of course, it’s quite clear now!

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