ST 2872 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2872

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2872

A full review by crypticsue

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This puzzle was published on Sunday 30th October

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


I found the top of this crossword harder than the bottom, so it took me a smidgeon longer than ‘normal’ for a Sunday.   I know the Favourites Policeperson won’t like it but I’m going to pick two – 12a and 26d


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           With half-hearted role in King Lear, let down fan (8)
FOLLOWER – Remove one of the O’s in FOOL (one of the role’s in King Lear) and add LOWER (let down)

9a           Ready to take off a governing body (6)
ABOARD – A (from the clue) and BOARD (governing body)

10a         Ask about positions, we hear, providing work for painter (6)
CANVAS – A homophone (we hear) of CANVASS (ask about positions).  

If you were someone who accesses the crossword from their i-Pad, then your clue was “Painting   one end of racing boat and sails,” a nice three definition clue that I preferred to the ‘main’ version.

11a         Careful providing husband with love when in depression (8)
THOROUGH – H (husband) and O (love) inserted into TROUGH (depression)

12a         One piece of text many deem tabu (4-6,4)
FOUR-LETTER WORD – a four-letter word is definitely tabu, but not the four such words in this clue – text, many, deem and tabu

15a         Burns, for example, some coal or turf, initially (4)
SCOT – The initial letters of Some Coal Or and Turf

17a         Discourage daughter getting together with family member (5)
DAUNT – D (daughter) ‘getting together with’ AUNT (family member)

19a         Not quite long enough time for world revolution (4)
YEAR – Almost all of YEARN (long)

20a         Train one performing, not so good at poker? (14)
EXPRESSIONLESS – EXPRESS (train) I (one) ON (performing) LESS (not so good)

23a         It’s smart concealing everything, using delaying tactics (8)
STALLING – STING (smart) concealing ALL (everything)

25a         Author that may get drunk in wine bar? Doesn’t sound like it (6)
GRAVES –  There is a type of wine that has the same name as this author but it isn’t pronounced in the same way.

27a         Lacks ability to frame refusal in hypocritical words (6)
CANNOT – NO (refusal) framed in CANT (hypocritical words)

28a         A statement of the obvious about Left’s consideration for others (8)
ALTRUISM – A TRUISM (a statement of the obvious) ‘about’ L (left)


1d           Travellers in European city, as they know it there (4)
ROMA – these travellers may well visit the city we know as Rome but the Italians  know as ROMA

2d           Musical old organ (6)
OLIVER – O (old) LIVER (organ)

3d           One of us has rook captured by piece (4)
BRIT – R (rook) ‘captured by’ BIT (piece)

4d           Work for us, with shorter spell for Americans (6)
LABOUR – We 3ds would add a U to the word for work that the Americans would spell as  LABOR

5d           Game   that’s not competitive (8)
MONOPOLY – a famous board game or a company without competition 

6d           Upset star, in embracing old dramatists (10)
TRAGEDIANS – An anagram (upset) of STAR IN into which is inserted (embracing) AGED (old)

8d           Part of our capital we spend, having change of heart (4,3)
WEST END – Change the P at the heart of WE SPEND into a T.

13d         Like scores requiring a lot of players (10)
ORCHESTRAL –  Time for an old cryptically-clued friend

14d         Travels round     city in France (5)
TOURS – two definitions – one a verb, the other a city in France

16d         Falling pound cutting capital (8)
TOPPLING – L (£ Sterling) ‘cutting’ TOPPING (capital)

18d         Despite that, having little time for reflection (7)
THOUGHT – THOUGH (despite that) plus T, the abbreviation (little) for time.

21d         Is misogynistic after first becomes last (6)
EXISTS – The S at the start of SEXIST (misogynistic) moves to the last place.

22a         Group of teams for 5,000 metres, roughly (6)
LEAGUE – Another double definition

24d         Score try, getting over a line (4)
GOAL – GO (try) A (from the clue) L (line)

26a         Like a piece of cake or pie? (4)
EASY – a piece of cake or as EASY as pie.