Toughie No 1545 by Shamus
The Italian Job
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment **
I normally enjoy a Shamus Toughie but I was slightly disappointed by this one. The two long down answers pretty much wrote themselves in and there wasn’t too much to get excited about in the rest of the puzzle. I did notice a bit of an Italian theme.
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.
8a One who sees value in any fare? (8)
OMNIVORE – one who’s not a fussy eater.
9a Did avoid being conned out of diamonds at first (6)
ELUDED – a past participle meaning conned without the leading D(iamonds).
10a Laugh endlessly in carnival location (3)
RIO – laugh here is a noun meaning a hilarious person. Drop the last letter from another informal word for such a person.
11a Abnormal fear Sikh must suffer (8)
FREAKISH – a fairly obvious anagram (must suffer) of FEAR SIKH.
12a News about Romans’ rendering of today’s drink (6)
NOGGIN – the abbreviation for new is repeated and contains how current day citizens of Rome would say ‘today’.
13a Ruse team promoter devised with sun out in normal conditions (4,11)
ROOM TEMPERATURE – an anagram (devised) of RU[s]E TEAM PROMOTER without the abbreviation for sun.
15a Noted status in pitch swamped by return of tribal teenagers (7)
STARDOM – insert another word for pitch (the black, sticky stuff) inside the reversal of one of the teenage gangs of the 1960s.
18a Report of local body giving advice (7)
COUNSEL – this sounds like a local governing body.
21a One’s enthralled by Latin wine said to be drunk by good royal officials (6-2-7)
LADIES-IN-WAITING – insert the Roman numeral for one into an anagram (to be drunk) of LATIN WINE SAID and finish with G(ood).
24a Actor, old man, guide for summits (6)
SHERPA – the surname of a British actor, born in South Africa, who was knighted in 2000 is followed by an affectionate term for one’s old man.
25a Backward joint therefore not opening? Here’s proof (8)
EVIDENCE – reverse a joint or disreputable place of entertainment and follow that with an adverb meaning therefore or consequently without its first letter.
26a Save military distinction (3)
BAR – double definition, the second a metal strip fixed to a military medal, showing that it has been won twice.
27a Occasion in which last batsmen must follow two directions (6)
ENTAIL – occasion here is a verb meaning to give rise to. The name given to the last few players at the bottom of a team’s batting order follows two directions.
28a Short distance explorer cut off at the finish and beginning (8)
INCHOATE – a short imperial distance followed by the surname of a gallant British polar explorer without his final S.
1d My robe is ragged, being in development (6)
EMBRYO – an anagram (is ragged) of MY ROBE.
2d Overcome resistance of duke with a king in theory (6)
DISARM – start with the abbreviation for duke then insert A and an abbreviation for king into an informal word for a theory or doctrine.
3d River, lake and rocks shown by artist — such is in uniform blue? (6,9)
POLICE CONSTABLE – string together an Italian river, the abbreviation for lake, the sort of rocks that you may request with your whisky and an English landscape artist.
4d Surprised expression among criminals maybe (7)
PERHAPS – insert an exclamation of surprise into an informal US term for criminals. Those of us who watched the wonderful Hill Street Blues will have no problems with this one.
5d Cardinal on video analysed old master (8,2,5)
LEONARDO DA VINCI – the answer is obvious from the enumeration but it’s still necessary to check that the anagram (analysed) of CARDINAL ON VIDEO actually works.
6d Tenor’s sung fantastically with another, no alternative element (8)
TUNGSTEN – the abbreviation for tenor and an anagram (fantastically) of SUNG are followed by the first word of the clue without the conjunction that’s used to introduce an alternative.
7d Stock exercise like runs initially everyone enjoys (8)
PEDIGREE – join together the abbreviation for physical exercise, an informal verb to like or understand, the cricket abbreviation for runs and the initial letters of everyone enjoys.
14d Deliveries announced for eggs (3)
OVA – this sounds like (to some people – not to me) a series of deliveries by a bowler.
16d Advanced during college with trendy ‘good education‘ (8)
TEACHING – insert the abbreviation for advanced into an informal word for a sort of college. Now add an adverb meaning trendy or popular and G(ood).
17d Push unduly African music with leader of rap in charge (8)
RAILROAD – start with a style of music from North Africa (new to me) then insert the leading letter of rap into a verb to charge or fill (a glass or a gun, say).
19d Runner, as captain, familiarly ignoring pressure (3)
SKI – a familiar word for a captain without the abbreviation for pressure.
20d Italian team on main road heading north for temporary period (7)
INTERIM – the name of a football team from Milan followed by the reversal of the main London-Leeds road.
22d Case of terror upset capital in shock (6)
TREMOR – the outer letters of terror precede the reversal of a European capital city.
23d Subtle refinement shown in Germanic etymology (6)
NICETY – we finish with a lurker.
My favourite clue, for the disguised definition, was 4d. Which one(s) attracted your approval?