A Puzzle by Starhorse
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
This week we have Starhorse’s latest puzzle. As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
I think we have our next graduate to climb the ladder from the Rookie Corner to the NTSPP (if he is tall enough to reach the rungs). This was an impressive crossword with only some very minor points on the clues.
6 Fellow soldiers policing area (5)
MANOR – A three letter word for a fellow or male and the abbreviation for other ranks
9 Let loose each April, set off for the islands (11)
ARCHIPELAGO – An anagram (let loose) of EACH APRIL followed by a word meaning set off or depart.
10 Film of May finally being associated with a little cocaine? (5)
ROCKY – A four letter word for a cocaine crystal followed by the last letter (finally) of May.
11 Chooses to be at home inside, like Billy? (9)
NOMINATES – The two letter word for at home inside a word followed by Billy for someone who has no friends.
12 Stolen furniture spotted in nurseries (7)
HOTBEDS – A three letter slang word meaning stolen followed by an item of furniture used for sleeping.
14 Filters out small amounts (7)
TRIFLES – An anagram (out) of FILTERS.
15 Extremely puerile, arrogant son – an awful, unwelcome character (7,3,5)
PERSONA NON GRATA – The outer letters (extremely) of puerile followed by an anagram (awful) of ARROGANT SON.
19 Offensive lines in play by old boy (7)
OBSCENE – The abbreviation for old boy followed by part of a play consisting of many lines.
21 Present numbers about absences (2-5)
NO-SHOWS – The abbreviation for numbers about a word meaning to present or demonstrate.
23 Discover a canister’s damaged (9)
ASCERTAIN – An anagram (damaged) of A CANISTER.
25 Pugilist starts to box irresponsibly in defence (5)
ALIBI – The name of a great boxer followed by the initial letters (starts to) box irresponsibly.
26 Star of 10 reportedly fell near Staffordshire town (6,5)
DUDLEY MOORE – A word that sounds like (reportedly) moor (fell) after (near) a town that is more accurately (now) in the West Midlands. Perhaps expecting solvers to know the local government shenanigans over the location of town is too specialist and it would have been fairer to say a West Midlands town to reflect the current status of the town.
27 Predator that’s not quite as impressive as an albatross (5)
EAGLE – The predatory bird that, in golf, is one shot more than an albatross.
1 Uncle misstating the rules of chess? (8)
PAWNSHOP – The place where you can hock goods (I’m going to the uncle) split 5,3 misstates one of the rules of chess where it is the knight that makes this manoeuvre. One of the rules of chess would be better than the rules of chess.
2 Weapon wound around one hand the last to be surrendered (8)
SCIMITAR – Another word for a healed wound around the letter representing one and a four letter word for a hand with the final letter (to be surrendered) removed.
3 Wedding planner whose counterpart has more energy? (6)
FIANCE – One of the parties to a marriage, the counterpart who is spelled with an additional E (energy).
4 Provided sustenance for leaders of Kenya – even provided tent (4)
KEPT – The initial letters (leaders of) the final four words of the clue.
5 Instrument tenors bash randomly (6,4)
BASSET HORN – An anagram (randomly) of TENORS BASH.
6 Modifying drug (not Ecstasy), gradually to start with (8)
MORPHING – The name of a pain relieving drug with the final E (not Ecstasy) removed followed by the first letter (to start with) of gradually.
7 Can the Spanish change in America? (6)
NICKEL – Another word for a prison or can followed by the Spanish for the.
8 King’s relatives murder revolutionary after never-ending quarrel (6)
ROYALS – A three letter word for a quarrel with the final letter removed (never-ending) followed by a word meaning murder reversed (revolutionary).
13 Unnerve members of staff with post-match instruction? (5,5)
SHAKE HANDS – A word meaning unnerve followed by a word for members of staff.
16 Ignore end of verse after poet admits blunder (8)
OVERRIDE – The name of an ancient Roman poet includes (admits) a word meaning blunder followed by the final letter (end of) verse.
17 A very old shop initially stocks what’s regularly seen in orchard i.e. fruit (8)
AVOCADOS – The A from the clue and the abbreviations for very and old followed by the first letter (initially) of shop include the odd letters (regularly seen in) of orchard.
18 He approves when Sibyl hoards books (8)
ASSENTER – A two letter word meaning when followed by a word for a prophetess or sibyl include the abbreviation for the books of the New Testament.
19 Recently Italian dramatist returned behind schedule (2,4)
OF LATE – Reverse the name of an two letter surnamed Italian dramatist (Dario ??) and follow this with a word meaning behind schedule.
20 Expression, for example, in the middle of Wigan (6)
SAYING — A three letter word meaning for example followed by the in from the clue and middle letter of Wigan.
22 Take fruit – primarily melons and pears – seen at the bottom of small vineyard (6)
SCRUMP – After (seen at the bottom of) the abbreviation for small add the first letters (primarily) of melons and pears and include a word for a vineyard.
24 Bragged twice about win (4)
CREW – A single letter for about (circa) followed by a two letter word meaning about (twice about) and the abbreviation for win. The abbreviation is not recognised in the Chambers or Collins but should be familiar from football results and the pools.