Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28341
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs, where the day has started bright and sunny.
I wasn’t sure quite what to make of today’s puzzle. I had the grid filled in ** time, but have added another star because it took me a little longer to be sure of the parsing of some clues. The slightly unusual grid, with many unchecked first letters, didn’t help. Giovanni is in strigtly secular mode today, and there are no really obscure answers, though still a General Knowledge element to some clues.
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7a Seven matters I’d written about in notices for the press? (14)
ADVERTISEMENTS – Anagram (written about) of SEVEN MATTERS I’D.
9a Stratagem needed by this person sunk in depression in military manoeuvre (10)
DEPLOYMENT – Start by putting together a stratagem and ‘this person’, then wrap a depression around the result.
11a Fish in tremulous motion, first to get away (4)
HAKE – Remove the first letter from a tremulous motion, and you get a fish.
12a The deep chair maybe with no back (3)
SEA – Remove the final letter (no back) from something of which a chair is an example.
13a Go around northernmost place in Ireland — finally locate valuable mineral (10)
TOURMALINE – Put together ‘go around’ (especially on holiday or in a bicycle race), the most northerly point of Ireland (it gets a regular name check on the reports from coastal stations in the Shipping Forecast), and the final letter of locatE.
16a Bananas and crunchy food (4)
NUTS – Double definition, the first being another informal term, like ‘bananas’, for ‘mad’.
17a Hesitation about bad feeling — give me a break! (7)
RESPITE – Reverse (about) a word expressing hesitation, then add a bad feeling, which would lead you to mistreat someone.
18a Lax female, the Parisian caught by detectives (7)
FLACCID – Put together Female, the French definite article in one of its forms, the abbreviation for Caught on a cricket scorecard, and the acronym for the detective department of the police force.
20a The Bard‘s determination (4)
WILL – Double definition: a short form of the first name of the Bard of Avon is the first.
21a One girl, May, works in a branch of earth sciences (10)
MINERALOGY – Anagram (works) of ONE GIRL MAY.
23a Past ace has to give way (3)
AGO – The abbreviation for Ace followed by ‘give way’ or ‘break’.
24a Get rid of garden feature? (4)
SHED – Double definition, the first being a verb, the second a noun.
25a Paper shows way the woman entered into risky venture (10)
BROADSHEET – Put together a way or path and the pronoun for ‘the woman’, then wrap a risky venture at the bookmaker’s around the result, to get something like The Daily Telegraph.
28a Horses escape shelters, going wild (14)
STEEPLECHASERS – Anagram (going wild) of ESCAPE SHELTERS. The horses are those running a particular sort of race.
1d Finish the whole affair and drink neat gin? (4,4,4,2)
HAVE DONE WITH IT – An instruction to finish something, or possibly to leave out one of the common mixers drunk with gin (not tonic, though).
2d Cricket ground with duck leading to endless depression (4)
OVAL – One of the London Test cricket grounds. The letter which looks like a cricketing duck, followed by a depression in the landscape with its final letter removed.
3d Time to get a little sunshine — one may come with some tea (4)
TRAY – Time followed by a shaft of sunshine.
4d Like a kind of energy that gets old cows twitching (7)
KINETIC – An old word for cows or cattle, followed by a nervous twitch.
5d Most successful rep gets a popular book (4,6)
BEST SELLER – Another word for ‘most successful’ followed by another word for ‘rep’, one which describes more openly what a rep does.
6d Robot-like as Bottom, say, in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (10)
MECHANICAL – This could describe Peter Quince, Snug or Flute as well as Bottom.
8d Transport items? Simple — relax! (4,6,4)
TAKE THINGS EASY – Another verb for ‘transport’, another word for ‘items’, and another word for ‘simple’. Put them together to get a phrase meaning ‘relax’.
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10d Resistance unit set up in Nottingham house (3)
OHM – Hidden in reverse (set up) in the clue.
14d What gets sailor up above deck, one being stranded (4,6)
ROPE LADDER – Cryptic definition of an object made from a stranded material used to climb something.
15d A planetoid, no place having phone or vehicle (10)
AUTOMOBILE – Put together A (from the clue), a planetoid (it used to be a planet, but it was relegated) with PLace removed, and a sort of telephone.
19d Having regular contact off the field (2,5)
IN TOUCH – Double definition, the second being where you are if go off over the side line of a football or rugby field.
22d Like son who lacks wisdom? (3)
ASS – Another word for ‘like’ or ‘in the manner of’, followed by Son.
26d Wood somewhere in Kent (4)
DEAL – Double definition: a generic term for softwood timber; or a port in Kent.
27d It sounds like he would take notice (4)
HEED – This sounds like the short form of ‘he would’.
The Quick Crossword pun SACKS + HONEY = SAXONY