Toughie No 1849 by Petitjean
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Petitjean continues to entertain us with no hint that the store of puzzles he left for us is coming to an end – long may they continue. There are a couple of sporting references which may cause problems for some but I found this one fairly gentle.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.
1/11a Contract left southern Conservative underfunded (3,1,4,5,5)
CUT A LONG STORY SHORT – string together an informal phrasal verb (3,5) meaning left, S(outhern), another word for Conservative and an adjective meaning having inadequate funds.
9a Bound to be kept in after boil burst (9)
OBLIGATED – a past participle meaning kept in (at school) follows an anagram (burst) of BOIL.
10a ‘The Joshua Tree’ — carbon copy by half of U2 in a year looking back (5)
YUCCA – insert the abbreviation for carbon copy and the first half of U2 between A and the abbreviation for year then reverse the lot.
11a See 1a.
12a 1, 11 or ebb? (4)
EDIT – what retreats or reverses during an ebb?
13a Sounds rather like a cute case for haberdashery (4)
ETUI – I’ve only ever come across this case for holding needles in crosswords (that may be because I’m not a great sewer). It sounds like A and an adjective meaning cute or quaint. I like the use of ‘rather’ to ward off any criticism of the homophone.
15a Former Fleet Street newspaper (7)
EXPRESS – a prefix meaning former followed by what Fleet Street is (or used to be) a metonym for.
17a Try cocktail of rum and French, as befits a connoisseur (7)
GOURMET – cement together a try or shot, an anagram (cocktail) of RUM and the French word for ‘and’.
18a Queen noted for reform may be abrasive (7)
ERODENT – our Queen’s cipher and an anagram (for reform) of NOTED.
20a Guide’s earlier version shows French cheese holding own (7)
BROWNIE – our usual French cheese contains OWN.
21a Test English before ten in the morning (4)
EXAM – an abbreviation for English precedes the Roman numeral for ten and the abbreviation we use for ‘in the morning’.
22a Regularly say no to one protester (4)
ANTI – regular letters from ‘say no to’ and the Roman numeral for one.
23a Reactionary football management undecided about getting behind (5)
ABAFT – the initials of the ruling body of football in England have a three-letter abbreviation meaning ‘as yet undecided but to be made known later’ around them. That all has to be reversed.
26a Skill shown by servicemen in extremes of combat (5)
CRAFT – the abbreviation for the men (and women) in one of our armed services goes between the outer letters of combat.
27a First-class county perhaps against China next (9)
PROXIMATE – a non-amateur team (3,2) as exemplified by a first-class county cricket side is followed by what a china is in Cockneyland. In cricket a first-class county is one of the eighteen in the County Championship as opposed to others who play in the lesser Minor Counties competition.
28a Thin gentlemen spread erudition (13)
ENLIGHTENMENT – an anagram (spread) of THIN GENTLEMEN.
1d Curse citation? (5-9)
CROSS-REFERENCE – cryptically, without the hyphen, this could be a word or phrase used to express anger.
2d Cartel concocted case for communications conglomerate (5)
TELCO – hidden in the clue.
3d Umpires’ equipment encountered during match? (5,5)
LIGHT METER – insert a verb meaning encountered into what a match or lucifer is an example of.
4d Fans welcoming promotion of brilliant tricks with football (7)
NUTMEGS – a word for fans or enthusiasts contains the reversal of another word for a brilliant (NB. a noun here).
5d Indirect approach from son showing lethargy (7)
SIDLING – the abbreviation for son and a present participle meaning showing lethargy or sloth.
6d Two unknowns performing before one of the Stones (4)
ONYX – two unknown mathematical variables are preceded by an adverb meaning performing.
7d Blyth for one — Chay capsized with broken mast heading north (9)
YACHTSMAN – concatenate an anagram (capsized) of CHAY, another anagram (broken) of MAST and an abbreviation for north.
8d Interviewee with predictably pedestrian views? (3,2,3,6)
MAN IN THE STREET – cryptic definition of someone who could be the successor to the chap on the Clapham omnibus.
14d Android installed with one hands-free program? (10)
AUTOMATION – another word for an android with the Roman numeral for one installed in it.
16d Circulate with actual pronounced limp too (9)
PROPAGATE – a homophone (to some people) of an adjective meaning actual or genuine followed by another homophone (indicated by too) of a way of walking (which could be a limp). I don’t really think that ‘limp’ without a ‘perhaps’ or similar really matches the requirement.
19d Spooner’s ‘Shut up, sheep!’ revealing camp constraint? (4,3)
TENT PEG – the reverend gentleman might have described a confined one-year-old sheep.
20d What 7 may do seeing trouble in fight (4,3)
BAIL OUT – put a verb to trouble inside a fight or contest.
24d Residents of Okinawa keep alive (5)
AWAKE – our second lurker of the day.
25d Heads of English, Technology, Art, Latin, and the rest (2,2)
ET AL – the first letters of words in the clue.
I ticked 17a, 20a and 7d but my favourite is 1/11a. Which one(s) took your fancy?