ST 2883 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2883

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2883

A full review by crypticsue

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This puzzle was published on Sunday 22nd  January

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

Another great Sunday puzzle which cheered up a proper winter’s day, with freezing fog and ice that never thawed.  My favourite was 19a, although there were quite a few ‘runners-up’ for the title.

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8a           She opened the box containing one or two of Pa’s pieces (7)

10a         Workers taken back into excellent plant (7)
ANEMONE –  A reversal (taken back) of MEN (workers) inserted into A ONE (excellent)

Back in October, Notabilis told me about a really good way of remembering how to spell the name of this plant. It has proved very helpful, but the question is: should I let everyone else into the secret?

11a         Source of pictures showing shrub in front of golf club (9)
HOLLYWOOD – HOLLY (shrub) WOOD (golf club)

12a         Fake psychoanalyst having change of heart (5)
FRAUD – Change the ‘heart’ of FREUD (psychoanalyst) from an E to an A

13a         Fish producing bad smell when head’s cut off (5)
TENCH – Cut off the ‘head’ of STENCH which here is a rare verb meaning to cause to stink (produce a bad smell)

14a         Otherwise express runs to European country (7)
RESTATE – R (runs) E (European) STATE (country)

17a         Justice and three others using bad advice run trials (8,7)
CARDINAL VIRTUES – An anagram(bad) of ADVICE RUN TRIALS.  Just in case you were wondering, the other three are prudence, temperance and fortitude.

19a         Setter’s superior when it comes to giving directions in clue (7)
POINTER A breed of dog that points when discovering game is bound to be superior to another breed, the setter.  A pointer can also be a hint, tip, suggestion or indication which would be helpful directions when solving a clue.

21a         One in suit given precedence over others? Blast! (5)
  TRUMP A card in a suit that ranks higher than other cards or an archaic term for a blast.  

24a         Fierce individual having row, good at heart (5)
TIGER – TIER (row) with G (good) at its ‘heart’

26a         Leading man‘s changing it, if he can (9)
CHIEFTAIN – An anagram (changing) of IT IF HE CAN

27a         Nasty type we had put outside quickly turned around (7)
WHEELED –  WE’D (we had) put outside HEEL (nasty type)  

28a         Secretive activity, the last resort? (7)
STEALTH – An anagram (resort) of THE LAST  


1d           Eventual outcome produced by aiming too high? (6)
UPSHOT –  Split the solution 2, 4 and you’d be aiming high rather than low

2d           Soul of wit exemplified in single craft (3-5)
ONE-LINER – ONE (single) LINER (craft)

3d           Adherent of widespread religious belief (10)
POLYTHEIST A cryptic definition of a belief in a plurality of goods.   Out of curiosity, I had quick search and  this was the only ten letter word I could find  using the checking letters in the grid.

4d           Computer device produced by firm with organised effort (4,5)
HARD DRIVE – HARD (firm) DRIVE (organised effort)

5d           Hazard at seado something to reduce canvas (4)
REEF – A marine hazard or something a sailor would do to reduce the exposed surface of a sail

6d           Boy present for a musical performance (6)
SONATA – Split 3, 2 1 you’d get a SON (boy) AT (present) A

7d           Provokes strike initially uncalled for (8)
NEEDLESS – NEEDLES (provokes) S (Strike initially)

9d           Placed above leaders of all the other people (4)
ATOP – The ‘leaders’ of All The Other People

15d         Stone cut, formally approved, and arranged in layers (10)
STRATIFIED –  ST – the (cut) abbreviation for Stone and RATIFIED (formally approved)

16d         Playwright grasping man who acts badly is obstacle (9)
BARRICADE – BARRIE (the playwright) ‘grasping’ CAD (man who acts badly)

17d         A cop went crazy in African city (4,4)
CAPE TOWN – An anagram (crazy) of A COP WENT

18d         As usual, Ben messed up, not fit to be employed (8)
UNUSABLE – An anagram (messed up) of AS USUAL BEN

20d         Reduced access for French artist (6)
INGRES – Reduce or remove the final letter from INGRESS (access)

22d         Effective drink for party on Fourth of July (6)
PUNCHY – PUNCH (drink for party) and Y (the ‘fourth’ of JulY)

23d         Fail to notice   single person? Not he (4)
MISS – A verb meaning to fail to notice or a single person that isn’t a man (not he)

25d         Short river, hardly stream (4)
RILL – R  (abbreviation, short of River) ILL (hardly)