DT 28504 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28504 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28504 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a    Bounty’s captain loses head with drunkard — a noted farce? (5,5)
The surname of the captain of The Bounty before the mutiny without its initial letter (head) followed by a drunkard and the A from the clue

10a    One doomed daughter of Lear (not the Italian) (5)
Drop the Italian definite article from the name of the eldest of King Lear’s three daughters

12a    School cricket side hosted by old king (7)
One of the two “sides” in cricket inside (hosted by) the old king of the popular nursery rhyme

13a    Let down seeing scenery set in river (7)
A four-letter name given to theatre scenery inside the jolly miller’s river (in another nursery rhyme!)

18a    Oppressed heretics fled somewhere in Derbyshire (12)
This anagram (oppressed) of HERETICS FLED gives a famous town in Derbyshire

… and a picture opportunity!

21a    A fashionable set in function that’s senseless (7)
The A from the clue followed by a two-letter adjective meaning fashionable inside a trigonometrical function

26a    Pitcher of Milwaukee Brewers (4)
Hidden (of) inside the clue – Milwaukee, the home of several breweries and the Brewers baseball team, is included purely to improve the surface reading

27a    Cover up QPR broadcast bloomers (10)
What sounds like (broadcast) a concatenation of a verb meaning to cover up and the name by which QPR are known (in England if not in Scotland!) gives some flowers (bloomers)


1d    What’s left, say, in flimsy surroundings (6)
What’s left in a will is derived by putting the Latin abbreviation of say, or for example, inside (in … surroundings) an adjective meaning flimsy

2d    Scrawny mob put on plays — nothing odd about that (6)
A mob followed by (put on in a down clue) the even letters (nothing odd about that) of a word in the clue

3d    Trio of distant objects for less than a penny (5,9)
Split as (5,3,6) this could be a trio of distant objects

4d    Group chasing Poldark getting upset, one owns (9)
A group chasing a criminal followed by the reversal of Poldark’s first name

7d    Trick to appreciate good dancing (8)
A charade of a trick or scam, a verb meaning to appreciate or increase in value, and G(ood)

8d    Mess with attractive woman, the first one having left (8)
Another charade – this time an attractive woman, the first one (i.e. woman) and L(eft)

9d    Complaining to Heston finally about healthy meat dish (4,10)
A verb meaning complaining, TO from the clue and the final letter of [Hesto]N around a four-letter word meaning healthy

15d    Offer to take trouble in number 10? (4-5)
… number 10 is a cricket term! – Tuffers was usually a number 11

17d    Intended following of French resistance (8)
… this intended is a male expecting to marry

22d    Guard overlooking small gate (5)
Drop the S(mall) from a guard

The Crossword Club is now open.

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The Quick Crossword pun: news+eland=New Zealand

53 comments on “DT 28504 (Hints)

  1. My word, that was a challenge. There were so many words/people I had not heard of, it felt like a quiz, not a crossword. Also, 15d I suspect will be impossible to fathom if not a fan of a certain game. However, a quite brilliantly disguised 17d was worth the entrance money alone, so still a thumbs up for me.

  2. Nice puzzle, the only one that gave me grief was 7d and I used other sources to get help – after reading the word it was still not obvious to me until I fell in – eventually!

    My anagram program didn’t find 14a so I had to resort to pen and paper and writing the letters out in a circle – the old ways are still the best!

    First Premier league weekend – West Ham are not at home until Sept 11th because of the blooming Athletics – the swapping of modes from Football to Athletics at the Olympic Stadium (I refuse to say London Stadium!) is unbelievably expensive and just seems balmy to me – the Company that runs the Stadium is losing millions – all at the Taxpayers expense!

  3. What a superb Saturday puzzle and in my view one of the best for quite a while. Having just returned from a couple of weeks on South Uist it was nice to get my copy of the paper by 9am today rather than after 6pm as we tend to on a Saturday in Lochboisdale. The brain seems to function better at this time of day as I completed in a personal best time. So many laugh out loud clues and answers, especially 27a, 15d and 17d which were among my favourites. Thanks to today’s setter and to BD for his efforts.

  4. This was a lot tougher than the normal Saturday offerings, but I got there in the end. 15D quite brilliant if you follow a certain sport. 1A also gets a mention in dispatches.Many thanks to to setter & BD for his hints.

  5. 3*/4*. It took me a while to get on wavelength but when I did it all came together slowly but surely, and great fun it was too.

    I didn’t know the scenery in 13a without checking my BRB and I was going to question the inclusion of Milwaukee in 26a but BD has already explained this.

    Lots to like here but my favourite is 15d, which will come as no surprise to those who know me.

    Many thanks to Mr (Mister?) Ron and to BD.

  6. A delightful way to round off a week of fun challenges most calling for some GK which is always welcome. Had forgotten scenery word, not sure about 18a oppressed and I failed to parse 21a and 15d. Presume the Quickie pun will amuse our 2Kiwis. Thank you Mysteron and BD.

  7. Phew – two mugs of coffee needed for this one. My slow start however was not helped by misspelling the captain’s name in 1a. Thank you BD for explaining 13a – I didn’t know or had forgotten the scenery word. 15d and 17d definitely get mentioned in dispatches but my favourite was 27a – totally groanworthy 😂

  8. Like Michael, I put in the answer for 7d and thought, “That can’t be right!” But it is – although it still doesn’t look right… This was most enjoyable and I would suggest that it’s one of the best Saturday puzzles for some time.

  9. Great website and really helpful in understanding what the clues mean. After 40 odd years of trying the Torygraph crossword I still don’t always get what the clues mean so it is nice to have somewhere that makes me go “Oh I get it!” Keep up the good work people.

    Nice crossword today with enough doubt being cast by some of the clues to make me work at it. 7d just didn’t look right but had to go with it – thank goodness. Couple of other clues had me head scratching and I haven’t heard 3d for years.

  10. Super Saturday fun with laugh out loud moments galore.
    7d earned a bit of an ‘umm’ from me – one of my so called non-words – but that was a minor complaint in an excellent puzzle.

    RD will be pleased to know that I managed 15d with little problem – I did also think that it shared a cryptic relationship with 10a – but I did doubt my assumption that 11a would be an anagram for quite a while.

    Very difficult to choose a favourite but I’m still chuckling over 3d so will award it the gold medal.

    Many thanks to Mr. Saturday Ron and to BD – although you lose the odd brownie point for ignoring the glaring photo opportunity offered by 4d!

    1. I had the same thoughts on 7d; but the BRB does include it as a verb, so the gerund form (Mr Cranham would be proud of me) of both the answer and the definition ‘work.’

    2. Totally agree with Jane about 3d – a lovely clue and a clear favourite for me. 17d also excellent.
      I too wondered at the absence of a picture for 4d but maybe we get quite enough of him in the media these days anyway . . . (but definitely not too much).
      Mouth watering picture for 9d – loved the clue, love the dish!
      I was confused about the Milwaukee mention in 26d so many thanks to BD for explaining it. 7d looked all wrong for a while but realised it just had to be.
      15d was last one in but got there in the end with a little help from Mr Google.
      A really good puzzle – many thanks to the setter and to BD.

  11. Found this fairly straightforward today, but very enjoyable. 15d the pick of some brilliant clues.

    Thanks to the setter and to BD for the hints and for the picture of my wonderful home town.

  12. I thought that was a good Saturday crossword.
    I could only think of one of King Lear’s daughters and it wasn’t the right one but finally, with alternate letters in, I remembered.
    12a fooled me for too long and I tried to make 27a an anagram until it became clear that wasn’t going to work.
    I agree with others who’ve said that 7d looks like a funny kind of word.
    15d was my last answer – I’d more or less guessed that it had to be something to do with the unmentionable sport but can’t find it anywhere – my BRB just says it’s the residence of the PM and I already knew that!
    I liked 1a and 3 and 9d. My favourite was 8d.
    Thanks to whoever set this one and to BD.
    Off to the garden – NTSPP later.

    1. 15d – the wordplay – a 6-letter synonym for “offer” outside (to take in) a 3-letter synonym for “trouble”.

      What cakes are on offer today in the Naughty Corner?

      1. None – my cake baking is being reserved for the return of No 2 son/big family gathering later in the week

  13. Well thank goodness for your hint re 15d Dave, got the answer no problem, but had no idea what the no 10 had to do with it!!! Really like 3d and found the top half harder than the bottom, gosh everyone is so well behaved in the Saturday club these days, I doubt there even is a naughty corner now!? :-)

    1. Hi Mary, I hope that you are well. I got the reverse with the top half being easier than the bottom. Either way a super puzzle and many thanks to BD for the helpful hints

    2. I don’t like to state the obvious but the no. 10 position in a Cricket team is one of these!

      The side that’s in go in until they’re out and then the Team that were out go in until they’re out etc etc

      1. Just to clarify that a little, numbers 9, 10 and 11 are normally the same but only 10 have to be out because there would not be anybody at the other end.

  14. Dear me, that was tricky! Needed a bit of electronic help with this one if only to discover a) who or what on earth Poldark is and b) what his first name is.
    A lot of very elegant if difficult clues such as 24a, 27a, 25a and 3d.
    My favourite was the aforementioned 27a, reminds me of my old boss who insisted that the crowd at Loftus Road used to chant Rhine Juice! The only bit that jarred a little was the unnecessary inclusion of Milwaukee, I don’t think it either improved or added to the clue at all but a minor point.
    Thx to all, now looking forward to Sunday’s Virgilus challenge so I have the wet towels all ready😀

    1. If you read BD’s hint for 25a you’ll find that the inclusion of Milwaukee actually is relevant to the clue

      1. I did read BDs hint but disagreed, I assume it is allowed to disagree with the great man occasionally 😀

        1. I hope I wasn’t implying that the inclusion of Milwaukee was relevant – I was trying politely to say that it was an error that a Rookie might have made but a professional setter should have avoided.

    2. I wouldn’t have expected you to be amongst the legion of Aidan Turner fans, Brian, but Winston Graham’s series of historical novels set in Cornwall are extremely well known. The man didn’t get an OBE for nothing!

      1. I have the first four books in paperback form bought way back in the 70s when they were the princely sum of six shillings each.

  15. Almost completed at a gallop but I couldn’t get the pace above a fast canter. Nevertheless, a very enjoyable puzzle without too much head scratching.

    I think my favourite has to be the double homophone of 27a, although 3d nearly made it.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  16. I enjoyed solving this. It was very satisfying to get 27a as homonyms are not my strongest suit. 15d raised a smile and reminded me of my undistinguished cricket career.

  17. A pleasantly tough and exacting challenge for a Saturday Prize Puzzle. A bit of a battle, if I’m honest, but very satisfying to have completed it and most enjoyable along the way. Many fine clues, of which 27a was my favourite, mainly because it was my last one in, therefore in theory the hardest one to solve. Overall 3*/4* for me.

    Many thanks to the Saturday setter for a roller coaster ride, and to BD.

  18. A very enjoyable and thought provoking puzzle. 27a is delightful, and my favourite, the sound of the penny finally dropping must have been audible for miles. 7d was the last one in for me.

    Many thanks to the setter and to BD for the hints.

  19. Definitely more thought provoking than usual for a Saturday crossword. I think I enjoyed the battle! 8d was my favourite clue, and overall well, 3/3* perhaps?
    For a Saturday? Ah well, maybe it’s me.
    Regardless, thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints.

  20. Tricky but enjoyable, 15d being last in. Liked 3d for its nostalgic worth, and 18a as our best friends live there … we’re very familiar with the spire there. 7d was also a hold up, such a strange word, just doesn’t look right.

  21. Hugely enjoyable, the bottom half much more difficult, maybe because of the crickety and football things.
    Like Kath, I tried so hard to make an anagram of 27a, but eventually I just bunged in the bloomer without knowing why. Likewise 15d.
    Fave is 3d as I have a bracelet made of the robin whatsits given to me as a young gel about twelve or so.
    Thanks to Saturday setter and to BD for his hints and tips.

  22. Just sat down with a coffee after a day spent cooking – and finished in fairly quick time. Liked 9d but was puzzled by 15d for quite a while. Groaned over 27a but then it made me smile. Really enjoyable !

  23. I have a cunning plan – could we call it ‘Kath’s law’? If or when you don’t understand an answer you should suspect ‘cricket’ until proved otherwise.
    The alternative is BD’s maxim which is if or when you don’t understand your answer it’s likely to be wrong.
    Take your pick! :unsure:

    1. Whenever I don’t understand a clue … it’s normally some bloody shrub in the garden.

      Is 27a a shrub?

      1. Yes – I’ll swap you the cricket/football/golf etc etc for anything that grows in the garden.

  24. Right on the 1*/2* cusp, and a solid 4* for enjoyment. Some lovely clues to choose from, but l’ll go for either 1a or 21a. Thanks to the setter, and to the hintster.

  25. The QPR reference gladdened my heart and made me highly biased in favour of this compiler. I enjoyed it very much in many ways, with a nice smattering of general knowledge as well as tight clueing. ***/**** for me.

  26. Well that was a challenge. I resorted to the “Mine ” for 15d , and scrolled down and down and finally got something that fitted the checkers.
    3d was my favourite .
    Thanks to BD and the setter.

  27. Strangely, I found this one of the easier of the week, I did not get the parsing of 15d until reading the blog.
    As ever, many thanks to BD for the hints and everything, and the setter, I thought this was an excellent crossword.

  28. I’ll join the mainstream for being surprised by 7d, not understanding 15d and the inclusion of Milwaukee in 26a until I read the blog.
    Great homophone in 27a. I’m sure Gazza would agree this time.
    Thanks to the Saturday setter and to BD for the club.

  29. I really struggled with this one and only completed it thanks to Big Dave – many thanks. My favourite clye was 3d followed by 27d. There were too many sports related clues for my liking. All in all not an enjoyable puzzle this time.

  30. Dear Big Dave and all you other chaps of infinite intelligence, could someone explain 16d please (DT 28,504)? I have the answer from the last half of the clue (about eggs) and the letters in it from the across answers but I cannot fathom the first half of the clue. I have this problem sometimes in that I get the answer but can’t work out the clue!!

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