DT 27728

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27728

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****

We had a few days of colder weather with rain in some areas that coincided with the opening events of the world cup cricket,
however it did not last long and we have returned to beautifully fine clear late summer days. It is getting a little nippier in the
mornings too but we have not yet been moved to change from sandals and shorts for our daily walks.
We have several birds in the puzzle to go with the Jay and the 2Kiwis, and also thought we had found another. But it wasn’t! The non-bird held us up a bit in the SE corner.

Please leave a comment telling us what you think of today’s puzzle.


1a     Minor damage with vehicle shunted at rear is a form of lottery (11)
SCRATCHCARD : The first seven letters make a word that describes minor surface damage, a three letter vehicle and the last letter of shunted.

9a     Head back after sailor’s major win (7)
JACKPOT : The reversal of a word meaning head follows one of the many synonyms used in Crosswordland for a sailor.

10a     A time trial witness (6)
ATTEST : A from the clue then T(ime) and then a word for a trial.

12a     Go on about horse (7)
CHUNTER : The one letter abbreviation for about is followed by the type of horse one would ride when going with hounds.

13a     Posh type importing pot is to stop operating (4,3)
TURN OFF : A four letter word for a posh type encloses a kind of pot.

14a     Characters in panto use lewdness, getting the bird (5)
OUSEL : It’s hiding in the undergrowth for you to find.

15a     Flier‘s surprisingly great pride curtailed (9)
PARTRIDGE : Anagram (surprisingly) of GREAT PRIDe with the last e deleted.

17a     Any sadist must be worried in religious occasion (6,3)
SAINTS DAY : An anagram (worried) of ANY SADIST.

20a     Television given to engineers may be adjusted (5)
RESET : A description of a television receiver follows the abbreviation for army engineers.

22a     Line adopted by FIFA fixed court trouble (7)
AFFLICT : An anagram of FIFA (fixed) includes L(ine) and then the abbreviation for court.

24a     Unhappy tale about pixie going back for flier (7)
LEAFLET : This is our bird that wasn’t. It is an anagram (unhappy) of TALE with a reversed synonym for a pixie included.

25a     Stops to invest £1000 in Scottish banks (6)
BRAKES : The Scottish word for a sloping bank includes a shorthand symbol for a thousand pounds.

26a     Complaint left university doctor with a turn (7)
LUMBAGO : A real Lego answer. L(eft) plus U(niversity) plus a two letter doctor abbreviation, A from the clue and a synonym for a turn.

27a     Disagreement from centre to new Members of Parliament (11)
CONTRETEMPS : One for Jean-Luc. An anagram (new) of CENTRE TO followed by the abbreviation for members of parliament.


2d     Limit put on Italian (old, but unfinished) government building (7)
CAPITOL : A three letter word for a limit then the abbreviation for Italian and OLd from the clue lacking its last letter. This is a US meaning of the word, we think.

3d     Invertebrate rook oddly found in new hardtop (9)
ARTHROPOD : The first and third letters of rook are included in an anagram (new) of HARDTOP.

4d     Plan talk about source of Rhine (5)
CHART : A word for talk includes the first letter of R(hine).

5d     Supplier of food for three queens? (7)
CATERER : The first queen is feline and appeared in a clue for yesterday’s toughie, and then HRH twice.

6d     Answer from soldiers on South Atlantic (7)
RESPOND : The soldiers are military engineers, then S(outh) and a colloquial epithet for the Atlantic Ocean. We call the Tasman Sea ‘The Ditch’.

7d     Flying jet, so create a form of escape (7,4)
EJECTOR SEAT : An anagram (flying) of JET SO CREATE.

8d     Packs amounts needed to cover credit (6)
SCRUMS : These packs are well known to Kiwis who follow our national game. The abbreviation for credit is included in a word for amounts.

11d     Deliberate pretence of kindness, embracing volunteers (11)
AFFECTATION : Take a synonym for kindness and include the (now outdated) abbreviation for volunteer soldiers.

16d     Athletic prince at university? (5,4)
ROYAL BLUE : A cryptic definition that could acknowledge sporting prowess by a student prince (the answer is also a shade of colour but this does not seem to be suggested by the clue).

18d     Gather refusal means hell (7)
INFERNO : A word for gather or understand an implication is followed by a two letter refusal.

19d     Wood‘s parking fine outside hospital? (7)
THICKET : What a parking fine is usually called has H(ospital) included to give this mass of trees or shrubs.

20d     Plan to redraft top drama tons rejected (4,3)
ROAD MAP : An anagram (redraft) of tOP DRAMA with the abbreviation for tons not used.

21d     Unfortunately up in the morning for a greeting (6)
SALAAM : Reverse a word meaning unfortunately and add the two letter abbreviation for before noon.

23d     Agreement as Telegraph shows discrimination? (5)
TASTE : It’s hiding in there.

We go for 24a as our favourite because of the clever misdirection.

Today’s Quickie pun  scarf + hell = Scafell



  1. Rabbit Dave
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    1.5*/4*. Gentle but great fun. Favourite 5d.

    Many thanks to Jay and to the 2Kiwis.

    • Kevin
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      me too
      and 6d wasn’t too bad either

  2. crypticsue
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    What Rabbit Dave said.

    I’d also add that today’s Toughie is both very user-friendly and fun too.

    • Brian
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

      Off to try it now.

      • Brian
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

        All done but need the hints to explain a couple of answers (12a and 9d).
        Must have been gently for me to finish it. I’ll leave comments of the appropriate page.

        • jean-luc cheval
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

          12a I think it has to do with a boom from a boat or a crane backwards + you minus it’s prime letter.
          9d is what you wear without he.

          • gazza
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

            You’ll get into trouble with BD if you give hints/answers to the ‘other’ crossword on this blog. Some people reading this blog may not yet have tackled the other one.

            • jean-luc cheval
              Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

              That’s the last time. I promise.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_redface.gif

              • Miffypops
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

                Rule 1 There are no rules
                Rule 2. See rule 1

                • crypticsue
                  Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

                  Sorry MP, but in this case I think this is a rule not to be broken. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

                • jean-luc cheval
                  Posted February 18, 2015 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

                  I’m torn between you and gazza.
                  As I said before, since the cultural revolution of 1968, it’s forbidden to forbid.
                  But on the other hand, and that applies also to your gorillas, we need to respect the hierarchy or might end up in total anarchy.
                  Besides, having met BD, I wouldn’t try a hostile takeover of his blog. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wink.gif

        • Brian
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

          Very sorry to have started this trouble. I did so enjoy the Toughie though and now I have understood my answers on the other place.

  3. Graham
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    Good fun but over far too quickly,1A was my favourite.Many thanks to the 2 Kiwis for an excellent review. No racing tips today after yesterday’s donkey only managed 6th place.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif

    • Rabbit Dave
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      Did you see Miffypops’ amusing comment yesterday after the race about the perils of betting on horses?

      • Miffypops
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

        The Cheltenham festival starts on Tuesday 10th March. A group of us go every year and breakfast at a pub on the way. Each year we say no beer until we get to the racecourse. Each year the waitress gets asked for beer and champagne as soon as we sit down for breakfast. Will we never learn?

        • Rabbit Dave
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

          Probably not. I used to go to the Cheltenham Festival regularly and always thoroughly enjoyed it, although memories of the start of each day are for some reason much clearer than the end.

          One particular non-racing highlight was in the late 80s when the Gold Cup was delayed by a surprise blizzard. We were whiling away the time in the bar drinking sloe gin when two young ladies decided to perform an impromptu striptease. However even their undoubted charms could not prevent a mass exodus back to the trackside as soon as the Gold Cup did eventually get underway. Perhaps you were there then too?

          • Miffypops
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

            Golly. I do not remember that one. I did meet Sir Peter O Sullivan a couple of years ago.

            • Rick
              Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

              Did he keep his clothes on?

              • Rabbit Dave
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

                You beat me to it in a photo-finish.

            • Angel
              Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

              Many years ago I served with Peter O’Sullevan on a fund-raising committee organising a charity race day at Newmarket and found him to be the personification of charm, courtesy and good humour. He contributed hugely to the overall success of the day.

          • Kitty
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

            I don’t really understand the appeal of horse racing. I’d have stayed in the bar.

            • Hanni
              Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

              As the women stripped? Fair play.

              The appeal comes with getting a box..therefore the bar comes to you and absolutely ignoring any tips you get. The food and drink are a bonus especially if you can get in on corporate. Ebor is a great meet.

              • andy
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

                Go horse racing once a year, Ascot , and oddly enough it manages to be on the same day as a Camra beer festival, what’s not to like :)

              • Kitty
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

                Well I can see the appeal in that.

  4. Dave B
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Good crossword, **/*** for me. Last in was 12a.

  5. jean-luc cheval
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    I agree with everyone so far.
    Very gentle. As was the toughie also.
    Nothing much to say apart from thank you to the setter and to 2kiwis for the review.

  6. Angel
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    A bit middle-of-the-road from an entertainment point of view but not too taxing. Always forget c for about because my first thoughts are usually re or anagram but 12a was of course obvious without parsing. Thanks Jay and 2Ks. Wonderful sunshine for last couple of days here in W. Sussex but cool mornings. ***/**. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_neutral.gif

  7. Burkey
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    I like this sort of crossword. The parsing allows you to work out words that you know to be right, even if you hadn’t previously heard of the words. 14A and 3D fell into that category for me. Last one in was 19D which I had heard of before, but found myself trying to shoehorn a ‘p’ into.

  8. Una
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    Quite straightforward until the last few.I have just looked up chunter in Chambers to see if it really exists, although it is perfectly gettable from the clue.It means mutter or grumble, appearantly . I had scouts for 8d which fits just as well.
    Thanks Kiwis and Jay.

    • George
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I had to look it up as well. Not come across it before!

      • Framboise
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

        Something new for me too – the only clue I failed on in today’s very enjoyable crossword!

  9. Sweet William
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    Thank you Jay for an enjoyable puzzle. I needed something not too difficult today as I am in the middle of my annual 24hr BP monitoring ! Thank you 2Kiwis for your review and hints.

  10. Brian
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyable but it was a little tricky esp 12a and 8d, needed the hint for 8d, not a follower of the oval ball game, that was beaten out of me at school! Found 11d very tough but having got the answer can’t really understand why. Mind you it didn’t help trying to fit in the answer to 7d, chump! Best clue for me def 1a, it’s all there, you just have to find it.
    Thx to all on this beautiful day.

  11. Miffypops
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    No time yet. I am in Gorilla country in The Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. 800 words to go and then another 100 on something to do with The Nile. Then it will be puzzle time.

    • spindrift
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

      I’m sure that you know what you are talking about but I’m not sure that the rest of us do but you seem to be happy so carry on with your dissertation.

      • Hanni
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

        I’ve tried asking but to no avail. Sometimes I think I may stay happier not knowing.

        • Miffypops
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:57 pm | Permalink


          • Hanni
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:06 pm | Permalink


          • Brian
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

            Ah that explains it all. Been therehttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

          • jean-luc cheval
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

            In France we call it University of the third age. Not very rewarding.

            • Bluebird
              Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

              In the UK, OU and U3A are entirely separate things…….

              • jean-luc cheval
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

                Thanks. I did some more research and in France it started with U3A in the 70s and it’s only in the mid 90s that they started accepting students of all ages and call themselves universities of free time or universities for all ages but evolved from the original structure.

              • Jane
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

                They certainly are! We have the most brilliant U3A in Bangor – talks every Thursday morning given in the main by present or ex-professors (one of the advantages of Bangor being a university city) and also 34 special interest groups which have their own regular meetings and outings.

                I don’t think every area of the UK necessarily has such an active group but I’d definitely recommend anyone to give their local branch a try – you may be pleasantly surprised.

        • Kitty
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

          See. It was more fun not knowing http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif.

    • jean-luc cheval
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

      That’s the kind of thing I would say if I haven’t shaved for a couple of days. But I don’t necessarily write about it.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  12. overtaxed
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Jay and 2 kiwis for an amusing and gentle diversion. No real problems today, so emboldened by CS, I’m going to try the toughie.

  13. Hanni
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:46 pm | Permalink


    I didn’t find this as easy as others but certainly very satisfying. 27a was my last one in and there was a certain amount of satisfaction when I twigged to it.

    I was misled by the anagram of 7d…I attempted ‘flying jet so’. That didn’t work.

    Many thanks to Jay and to the 2Kiwis for a lovely blog.

  14. Kath
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    I loved it – nearly always do on Wednesdays. 2* difficulty and 4* for enjoyment from me today.
    1a was my last answer – don’t ask me why – it just was. With alternate letters in it looked such an unlikely combination that I thought I must have got something wrong.
    The 8d packs were the “oh dear” for today – I’m getting slightly better about sporting clues but that’s one I always forget.
    I found the 14a bird in the undergrowth without any trouble – 23d was a different matter and was my second to last answer.
    I liked 1 and 27a and 5d. My favourite was 12a – my Dad was always telling us to stop chuntering.
    With thanks to Jay and the Kiwis.
    Lovely day in Oxford – stuff to do then garden and Toughie.

    • Rick
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

      I got lucky with 1a. I saw the vehicle + D quickly and worked back. I agree it looks an unlikely combination of checkers otherwise.

  15. Hathersage John
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    My fave for a long time! Loved every second of it. Beautiful day high in the Peak District. Erecting a trellis for climbing plants – not a trestle, which I tried to ask my local DIY store for – wondered why the puzzled look! That’s what doing crosswords does for ya. Thanks to setter and Kiwis.

    • Miffypops
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

      We have a letter from Mrs Trellis

      • Hilary
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

        Thank you for this reminder – Dear Mrs Trellis.

        • Franco
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

          I’m sorry … but I don’t have a clue what you are talking about.

          • Hanni
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

            Very good. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

            • Hilary
              Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

              It was not the same after HL went to the great jazz band in the sky.

              • Franco
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

                I’ve just received this note from Samantha to say that she misses him too …

                • andy
                  Posted February 18, 2015 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

                  ‘Samantha has to go now as she’s off to meet her Italian gentleman friend who’s taking her out for an ice cream. She says she likes nothing better than to spend the evening licking the nuts off a large Neapolitan.’

                • andy
                  Posted February 18, 2015 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

                  And let’s not forget Sven:

                  Sven has nipped out to try and find a new cleaner for his ballroom. Apparently the previous lady refuses to stand waiting with a bucket all night while he holds his balls and dances…

              • Miffypops
                Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

                Little Humphreyton. Bless

      • andy
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

        Ha, one of my. no make that my all time radio comedy

  16. Expat Chris
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    Very nice, but over too quickly. No favorites, just an all around pleasant solve. Thanks Jay and the 2Kiwis.

    Sitting in my toasty warm office looking out at the 6 inches of snow we had yesterday. Maybe a bit more to come later today, but I don’t have to go anywhere. Toughie is done, too, so I guess I have no excuse to delay starting the work day.

  17. Veronica
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    I’ve finished another one all by myself, hurrah! Must be the sun streaming through the window here in East London. I’m definitely learning. Thanks

  18. Rick
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    A very quick solve and certainly my fastest ever for a Wednesday. Looking at it again I think it is an accesible grid that also happens to be very generous with the checking letters. Look how few Es there are and how many really helpful consonants in key positions. So many answers just leapt off the screen. On other days it can feel like Es are all you get!

  19. George
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    Well, I found this to be a bit more tricky than many puzzles of late. I finished it without too much trouble but it was a slow solve with much grinding of my brain.

    I would agree with 3* difficulty and 4* enjoyment.

  20. SheilaP
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    This took a long time to get going but then fell into place quite satisfyingly, so we enjoyed it very much. Thank you to the 2Kiwis and to the Wednesday setter.

  21. The Navigator
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    *\**** for me until 8d/12a which kept me puzzld for a while… So **\****. Thanks to setter and kiwis for your efforts. Spent many hours sitting on a 7d, but fortunately was never required to use it!

  22. Chris
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Good fun and steady progress with no special problems (other than echoing Kath’s comment about 1a looking unlikely once I had done all the others!). 2*/ 4* from me. Many thanks to the 2Kiwis who never fail to impress with their bird pictures, and thanks to the setter.

  23. Franco
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    I always enjoy Jay’s crosswords and the reviews from 2Kiwis. Excellent stuff as usual from both today.

    (There are lots of birds flying all over the place in today’s Grauniad cryptic. A good one for all twitchers.)

  24. Heno
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. A very nice puzzle from Jay with some great surface readings. Last in was 1a. Favourites were 5&7d. Was 2*/4* for me. Completed in the pub in Twickenham after a nice walk in the sunshine along the Thames.

    • Miffypops
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

      Barmy Arms?

      • andy
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

        My local in Peterborough is the Palmerston arms, regulars known as the Palmy Army

  25. fran
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    My grandma used to use chunder as an alternative to chunter ; I think this was a common northern word , could be my memory is playing tricks .
    Found this to be enjoyable , pity it was over so quickly . I have enjoyed all of them this week but Thursday’s is usually a very different animal.

    • gazza
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

      I think that chunder means something completely different. i.e. to vomit. :D

      • fran
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

        Yes cheers Gazzz many sites on the internet said the same , but there are a couple of sites which refer to chunder : meaning to grumble/ grumbling /go on etc

      • Kath
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

        I think it comes from people throwing up over the side of a boat and warning anyone on the lower decks to get back inside – a contraction, if that’s the right word, of “watch under”. Don’t even want to think about it . . . http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

        • fran
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

          Especially if it was a smallish boat hit by a perfect storm !! Thanks for the visual Kath, if this clue comes up again — whoops * what am I saying

        • andy
          Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

          Well that’s supper scuppered

          • fran
            Posted February 18, 2015 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

            sorry about that , wasn’t Fish and chips by any chance

  26. Shropshirelad
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

    Entertaining outing from Jay today, albeit quite gentle (am now worried what to expect for the rest of the week). Thanks to the 2Kiwis for the review and Jay for the puzzle.

  27. Miffypops
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    I could not get 22ac because I had put IFERRNO at 18d. A smashing review 2ks. I loved your hints at 22ac and 23d. Just what Big Dave did not expect. I am leaving the Gorillas where they belong and am off to Amazonia now.

  28. Hilary
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    Lovely bright cheerful day in Suffolk which perfectly fitted this sparkly crossword. Again my trusty pencil skipped happily across the page popping in answers until I came to a grinding halt, 8d dawned closely followed by 12ac. Thank you to Jay and 2Kiwis, ** for difficulty but ***** for enjoyment. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  29. Miffypops
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    My little advert is for Vine House Farm Wild Bird Food today. Very appropriate

  30. 2Kiwis
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    Good morning all. Nice to get up early and see our email Inbox filled up once again. We had been wondering during the night whether there was something about 16d that we had missed. It did seem to us to be all wordplay without any definition that would point to a colour. However as there are no comments, reckon that we did get it right after all. Cheers.

    • Ginny
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

      Hi 2 Ks, it seems a bit like two clues that make up one answer without very much to link the two halves together?

      Thank you for your review, and in fact for all your reviews and hard work, especially given the respective time zones. You have the first cool of autumn just as we are getting some sun, crocus and snowdrops while George is still snowed up.

    • Kath
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

      I agree about 16d – thought that I was missing something but maybe not – who knows and at nearly bed time who cares?
      Beautiful day here in Oxford – up to 10C – sweet peas planted! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  31. Kitty
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    Wednesdays are usually days of quality in both crossword and review and today was no exception. The last few answers stopped me racing to the finish too fast, but it all went in smoothly enough.

    I was held up a little by confidently slotting in Easter day for 17a – that’ll teach me for not writing out anagrams. I’d heard the word for the Scottish bank but would not have been able to tell you its meaning. Words such as 3d might have escaped me but for it being mixed into the clue and offered as fodder. It took me a long time to spot the lurker in 23d, then 12a and 8d were my last in. Not quite sure why 8d was so difficult – not just for me but lots of you too it seems. I didn’t really get 16d – thought there must be more to it that I was missing or that I’d guessed it wrong.

    18d is today’s runner-up, but being a big eater and a lover of the first type of those queens, I will go with 5d for favourite.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

    • Jane
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

      Just as well the crossword’s fresh in my mind, Kitty – it rather looks from your comment as though you enjoy eating cats, although I’m absolutely certain that was not your intention!

      • Kitty
        Posted February 18, 2015 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

        Indeed not!

  32. Paso Doble
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    Just back from a wonderful trip to Moscow and have avoided the puzzle for a few days because I prefer ink on newsprint rather than downloads. My better half has been attempting the puzzles on my be-half…But it was great to be back into the fray today. Thanks for the review to the 2 Kiwis – we totally agree with your comment about the ‘blue’ in16d – and thanks to Jay for a really enjoyable puzzle.

  33. Jane
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

    Luverly stuff – 1*/4* for me. Only slight hesitation came with 3d – it not being a word I write on a regular basis I initially tried for ‘n’ (new) as the second letter but realised that left me with a spare ‘r’.
    Fortunately, 12a was found before tackling 8d, otherwise the sporting reference may well have passed me by.

    Plenty of clues to choose from as favourite but will mention 6,11&16d as the most likely candidates.

    Thank you, Jay, for brightening a cold and windy day and thanks as ever to 2Ks for the wonderful review. The pic. for 7d looks as though it should have been part of a cartoon but I’m blessed if I can think what the caption would have been!

  34. Gwizz
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

    One of those (few) days when everything clicked. Almost a R&W but very enjoyable as Jay’s puzzles always are. I liked 12a simply because the very sound of the word amuses me.
    Thanks also to the 2K’s for their usual high class revue.

  35. Framboise
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    Many thanks to the 2Kiwis for their entertaining review – loved the illustration for 7d – and to Jay for a most enjoyable and doable puzzle. Admittedly I failed on 12a but have learnt two new words in the process: chunter and chunder – incidentally I had to enter both in my IMac dictionary as they were new to it as well. My last one in was 25a as I had entered ik for 1000 Pounds when all I needed was just K and braes.2.5*/4*with 1a as my favourite.

  36. silvanus
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    Very enjoyable stuff, nothing too difficult but a few that needed some careful thought.

    Especially liked 5d, 19d and 16d, but I too was looking for a definition that wasn’t there.

    It’s typical that the NZ weather would break just in time for the Cricket World Cup, but the TV pictures from Dunedin the other day looked delightful, and Otago has been suffering quite a drought lately I hear. I hadn’t realised that Dunedin is derived from the Gaelic name for Edinburgh apparently !

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  37. Vancouverbc
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    Very lazy start to the day which looks like its going to be very nice for a walk by the Serpentine. A **/**** for me. Very good mix of clues but my favourites were 5&7d.

    • vancouverbc
      Posted February 19, 2015 at 12:13 am | Permalink

      oops! wheres my manners. thanks to the setter and the 2Ks for the review.

  38. Nina Keay
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

    Lovely clues – and fair too. A few quiet smiles. Really enjoyable.

  39. Salty Dog
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    An amusing puzzle and an even more amusing review, for which thanks to Jay and the 2 Kiwis respectively. I scored this one at 2*/3*, and go for 12a as top clue.

  40. Jay legs
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    A nice straight forward puzzle thanks to the two Kiwis, but why is there a picture of a Blackbird beside the clue for an Ousel which is the Ring Ousel in Europe!

  41. Michael
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

    Golf today followed by five pints down the pub – and I still managed to do the quick crossword and this one too!

    It was pretty straightforward with a few nice anagrams which helps me greatly – 12a was my last one in – I had all the checkers and used my Wordsearch program but just couldn’t see it – thanks to the blog for that one!

    Onward and upwards – 38 points today off 14 – aiming for 12 by the summer! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

    • Hanni
      Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

      Well done!

      Sadly I know something about golf. This may have come up before. Single figure by 2016?

      • Jane
        Posted February 19, 2015 at 12:21 am | Permalink

        Tell me about it – and even when they get down to a really low handicap and you expect them to be incredibly happy, all they do is moan about the number of shots they have to give away! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif

        • Hanni
          Posted February 19, 2015 at 12:46 am | Permalink

          Jane, that is perfectly putt. ;-)

          • Jane
            Posted February 19, 2015 at 12:53 am | Permalink


  42. Tstrummer
    Posted February 19, 2015 at 1:27 am | Permalink

    Most enjoyable puzzle from Jay; most enjoyable review from K-squared. 26a was probably the pick of a very fine bunch for me. 4* fun, 2* challenge