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DT 28505

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28505

Hints and tips by Miffypops (and Big Dave)

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

An easy solve but a tricky blog to write. I needed BDs help with the 5d and the whole of 8d and I’m none too sure about 9d. Overtired I think.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Pay for short dance with King Kenny Dalglish? (10)
FOOTBALLER: Begin with a verb meaning to pay a bill. Add the type of dance associated with Darcey Bussell but minus its last letter (short) Add the royal cypher as used by the king. Together this will make a sportsman. Kenny Dalglish was one such. He last played 26 years ago but using his nickname gave the clue a pleasing alliteration.

6a    Check what snooker player does in retirement (4)
STOP: When reversed (in retirement) a word meaning to check or halt progress becomes what a snooker player does with his balls during play

10a    Group botch thefts every now and then (5)
OCTET: The words every now and then tell us to pick out every other letter of the words BOTCH THEFT. If the odd numbered letters don’t cut the mustard the even numbered ones will

11a    One relates to race run badly (9)
RACONTEUR: Anagram (badly) of TO RACE RUN

12a    Shallow character involved in leak (4-4)
SKIN DEEP: Place a word meaning character or type inside a verb meaning to leak slowly to find a description of something shallow often associated with beauty

13a    Place to sit during occupation (5)
PATIO: Second to last one in and after a lot of head scratching I followed a simple piece of advice learnt on this site. If all else fails, look for a lurker (hidden word). Lo and behold, there it was lurking and smirking away hidden within the words of the clue. The word DURING is your clue to look for a hidden word.

15a    Straight post (7)
UPRIGHT: A double definition. Nothing to do with the clue but we once bought such a piano which had been stored in a barn. We quickly became overan with mice that had nested within.

17a    Listener partly unravelled a murder (7)
EARDRUM: Anagram  (unravelled) of,A MURDER

19a    Examine pressure getting into cricket? (7)
INSPECT: those of you who go all gooey at the mention of cricket fear not. This has nothing to do with cricket the sport (that comes along at 3d and 7d) but all to do with cricket the creature. Place the abbreviation for pressure inside an example of what a six legged cricket is

21a    Town with too much (7)
ANDOVER: Start with a conjunction meaning with and add a word meaning higher or more than

22a    Dance that’s hot stuff (5)
SALSA: Both a dance and a hot sauce. A double definition

24a    Not great playing, as planned (2,6)
ON TARGET: Anagram (playing) of NOT GREAT

27a    Excessively keen on period encapsulated by Queen (9)
OVEREAGER: Begin with a four-letter preposition meaning on or above. Add our present monarchs regal cipher into which (encapsulating) put another word for a period.

28a    Relative‘s regularly inside church (5)
NIECE: This relative can be found by taking every other letter (regularly) of the word INSIDE and adding the abbreviation for the Church of England. As with 10ac there is no indication to say the odd or even numbered letters.

29a    After short time, demand something to do (4)
TASK: Use the regular abbreviation for time followed by a verb meaning to demand or question something.

30a    Boss, cunning, securing promissory note with due diligence (10)
STUDIOUSLY: A three part charade with an insertion. 1. A crosswordland boss (4). 2. A word meaning cunning (3). Insert (securing) the abbreviated form of a promissory note regarding debt.


1d    Set up Bolt for run (4)
FLOW: Last one in and last to work out why. The word bolt here refers to eating food quickly. Find a word synonymous with that meaning and reverse it to find a word meaning to run as a liquid does.

2d    Kiss tutor working in Borders (9)
OUTSKIRTS: Anagram (working) of KISS TUTOR

3d    Don’t declare staff (5)
BATON: Split 3,2 we have a description of what a cricket side will do if they do not declare. To describe the answer as a staff is a bit of a stretch.

4d    Superlatively extensive and somewhat popular gesture (7)
LARGEST: A lurker (somewhat).

5d    One absconding from English undermining French art head (7)
ESCAPEE: E(nglish) after (undermining) the French for art, as in thou art / you are followed by a headland (thanks BD)

7d    Midlands banker runs to fill temporary accommodation (5)
TRENT: Place the cricketing abbreviation for runs inside a type of temporary accommodation used for camping. A banker here is a river.

8d    Actors in theatre promoted previous show at first (10)
PERFORMERS: A three-letter word for theatre reversed (promoted In a down clue) followed by a word meaning previous and S[how] and thanks also for this one BD

9d    Impressive within, like some churches (8)
INSPIRED: Some churches contain a conical tower and can be described thus.

14d    Shave one’s head but stop too soon? (3,2,5)
CUT IT SHORT: Two definitions that mean the same thing How ones hair gets to be less long

16d    Woolly matter in retirement home? (4,4)
GREY AREA: A noun meaning an ill-defined situation or area of activity not readily conforming to a category or set of rules could loosely describe a retirement home based upon the likely hair colour of the inmates.

18d    Upset ever wiser critics (9)
REVIEWERS: Anagram (upset) of EVER WISER

20d    Orwell’s sort of police? That’s an idea (7)
THOUGHT: One of the types of police in George Orwells novel 1984 which was 34 years ago.

21d    Turned out dry, freshened up outside (7)
ATTIRED: Use the abbreviation for teetotal (dry) inside a phrase used to describe how washing may be freshened up

23d    City sheltered one from the law (5)
LEEDS: A city from somewhere up north can be found by using a term meaning shelter and the abbreviation for one from the law. A Detective Sergeant perhaps

25d    Token of love — love for drummer (5)
RINGO: A token of love as worn on the third finger of the left hand is followed by the letter that looks like the love score in tennis

26d    Refuse to accept study by unknown (4)
DENY: Place a study or lair before one of the mathematical unknowns.

I hope you all enjoyed this puzzle as much as I did.



101 comments on “DT 28505

  1. 2*/4*. The usual great fun to start the week. On my podium today were 1a, 17a & 1d.

    Many thanks to Rufus, and to the MP / BD combo.

  2. Leather on Willow sprung to mind for 19a, so spent too long on what turned out to be an easy clue with an easy answer. 16a was my favourite. I loved the cartoon clip for 3D. Many thanks Rufus and MP.

  3. The only one I couldn’t parse was 1D so thanks for putting me straight. Top marks go today to 20D. Many thanks to the setter & to MP. Not sure that I would call Mr Starr a drummer but hey ho!

    1. Modern Drummer magazine:
      How was it playing with Ringo again?

      Jim Keltner:
      Oh Man! Playing with Ringo is something everyone should have a chance to do. He’s so honest. He just grooves, and when it’s time for a fill, he fully commits. I would look over at Henry, and we’d be amazed at what he does to the beat–the way he pulls it back. There’s just nobody like Ringo.

      1. Didn’t John Lennon say “He’s not even the best drummer in The Beatles”? A bit harsh, I thought.

        1. Phil Collins always maintained that technically Ringo was excellent, and having heard and seen him live with Genesis, I would not argue

        2. No, that was a Jasper Carrot joke, popularly (and erroneously) attributed to John. Not sure why Ringo couldn’t be called a drummer, both John and Paul said the Beatles would not have been as good without him.

          1. Welcome to the blog from me too. There are those who know how to listen and those who don’t. It sounds like you may be amongst the former. Welcome aboard

  4. Bunged in 8D based on the first three words in the clue but couldn’t work out why until I saw the hints. First time I have come across promoted meaning reversal. Thanks MP, BD and the setter for a good heads scratcher.

  5. Despite MP’s doubts about the word ‘staff’ I really liked 3d. Clever and simply clued. This was another great start to the solving week from Rufus, gently teasing and enjoyable, so 2*/4* from me overall.

    Thanks to the aforementioned and to MP/BD.

    Re the hint for 17a, shouldn’t the word ‘partly’ be outside the parentheses?

  6. Straightforward Monday fodder for for me, completed in 2* time. Seeing 1a as a starting clue put me on the back foot, thinking we had some weird sporting reference. COTD is definitely 5d. “French art”? Magnifique!

  7. 1d was my last one too and it took the blog for me to get it.

    Very nice puzzle and thouroughly enjoyable.

  8. Gave myself a problem with parsing 1a having initially settled on ‘ball’ for the dance and couldn’t find the ‘French art’ in 5d. All so easy with hindsight!
    Like MP, I’m not too sure about 9d – it doesn’t ‘feel’ quite right.

    15a earned a tick for being so succinct but today’s top prize went to 16d.

    Thanks to Rufus and to MP – who appears to be a year ahead of the rest of us. Any chance of a heads-up on the winning numbers in the lottery for the next few months?

    1. I am tired Jane. I don’t want to make excuses but I am tired. Not too tired to throw in today’s deliberate mistake though. Well spotted. I will send your prize through the post. A live Cd by Mr Tom Waits. Glitter and Doom. You will love it.

  9. At first thought that it was going to be the normal Monday stroll in the park but then found the NW corner to be as tricky as the greens at Quail Hollow 🏌🏽So ***/*** I am another poor soul confused by “French art” 🤔 Favourites 19a & 3d 😃 Thanks to MP, BD and the Setter

  10. Finished with help from MP/BD for which many thanks. Most difficult clues were 1a and 5d for some reason, I don’t know why. Also thanks to Rufus for setting the week off to a good start.

  11. I also couldn’t parse 1d , so thanks for that Miffypops.
    I liked 14d best. Thanks also to Rufus.

    1. Gosh! Thanks for popping in to clarify that, and many thanks for all the pleasure you usually give us on a Monday.

      Thanks too to Mr Ron whoever he/she may be for today’s puzzle.

    2. I did think it was somewhat unlike your usual Monday style – wonder whether the ‘guilty’ party will drop in?

    3. I couldn’t understand 5d … I knew ‘tu es’ in French but didn’t associate it with thou ‘art’!! Instead I googled ES French art and amazingly it came up with a site called Images for ES French art!!!!!
      In 23d does lee mean sheltered? I thought it only meant shelter?
      In all fairness I didn’t think this was at all like Rufus ;-)

      1. Hi Mary. Lee as a noun means shelter, but it can also be used an adjective meaning sheltered.

    4. Thanks for clarifying, not the usual gentle Monday start to our week we look forward to…

    5. Thank goodness for that! I had been a little disheartened but my pleasure on Mondays’ is restored

    6. Apologies Roger. I should not have been so succinct with my comment above. What I should have said was

      Hello Roger, thanks for dropping in. I had my doubts as to wether or not you set this puzzle so did not mention you just in case. Thanks for the years and years worth of wonderful puzzles that brighten so many lives every Monday morning both here and in The Gaurdian. Best wishes to you and yours. MP

      1. Just come to my computer and I see the name now! He must be so proud of his very own bike, with his name on it to boot. He’s a very lucky boy.

        You sound as if Rufus is leaving us forever, I do hope that isn’t so. I shall be so downhearted, between Virgilius and Rufus I can’t decide who’s my fave. Oh dear.

  12. I did not find this all that easy. Only made sense of 5d after reading the blog(Thanks BD). My favourite clue today was 16d.

    1. Glad I am not the only one to find this tricky. I rather liked 9d but would never have got 1d without the blog so thanks to setter, MP and BD

  13. My setter detector system is not the best but, while solving, I could not help thinking that this was not Rufus at his best and, thanks to the maestro himself (comment 12), it turns out it was not Rufus at all.

    This turned out to be a bit of a trudge – **/**.

    Favourite – 30a.

    Thanks to the setter, MP (with some of the clues/answers, I can understand why it was tricky to write the hints), and BD.

  14. A t like the Curates egg good in parts, I had a couple of overwrites 1d being one and 13a.
    Notwithstanding though a nice little teaser in parts.
    Thanks to Miffypops and setter.

  15. Re BATON. A baton as carried by a Field Marshall can fairly be described as a staff. Loved the cartoon though

  16. All good, if slightly quirky for a Monday, now I see why that would be. I was blind to 17a for some reason.
    I think we have seen the 9d construction in various forms before.
    Many thanks to our mystery setter and to MP & BD.

  17. Everything went well to begin with and then it all started to go quite badly wrong. Oh dear.
    5d had to be what it was if only because I don’t think there’s another word that fits with those letters but I couldn’t see why.
    I completely missed the 13a lurker.
    Then eventually I got down to the bottom left corner – my ‘woolly matter’ was ‘grey hair’ which didn’t help anything very much.
    The 23d city had to be what it was but, again, I couldn’t see why.
    Oh well – having seen that Rufus isn’t today’s setter I’m beginning to think that Monday crosswords are the problem rather than Rufus crosswords.
    I liked 21a and 8 and 14d. My favourite was either 1 or 3d and I loved the cartoon for 3d.
    Thanks to whoever did set this one, to the worn out MP and to BD too.

  18. I think 9d looks dodgy if you look at it as an all-in-one, but if you start with ‘in’ for ‘within’ followed by the word for possessing a conical church decoration then it makes sense.

  19. Thanks to the blogger and to those who have commented — just popping in to out myself as today’s setter!

    1. Well – who’d have thought it! Thanks for dropping in, Mister Ron.
      It will be interesting to discover whether the 2Ks had you ‘pencilled in the margin’ as the setter – they seem to have rather mastered the art of setter spotting.

      1. Sorry to disappoint Jane and not sure we deserve the reputation you ascribe to us. Although we did note that it felt a bit different to a usual Monday puzzle we did not pursue any conjecture about an alternative setter. So the margins are bare.

    2. Thanks for the thanks. I would not have guessed it was your work but I knew it wasn’t by Rufus. Thanks also for dropping in – always appreciated. Although I solved every clue I needed BDs help to sort 5d and 8d. A rare occurrence. Despite my comment at 13ac I completely failed to spot the lurker at 4d. That should bring a smile to Kath’s face.
      Thanks again for a super puzzle

  20. Thanks Rufus for a nice puzzle to ease me into the week. King Kenny at 1a was my favourite, and 2/4* overall.
    Thanks also to MP for almost completing the review.

  21. A Monday puzzle that isn’t a Rufus – what a surprise. I can’t recall two setters commenting before on the same crossword, one claiming authorship and one denying it!

    There were certainly plenty of Rufusesque clues, but a few that didn’t seem quite the norm for a Monday. such as 5d and 8d. Very enjoyable nevertheless. My two favourites were 3d and 23d.

    Many thanks to Mister Ron and to MP/BD.

  22. Um… I hit the edit button a tad too late I see. I just wanted to wriggle out of thanking Rufus for today’s puzzle now that he has declaimed it. Oh well, can’t win them all.
    Thanks to whomever then! And thanks Rufus for all the other Monday puzzles.
    I’m going back to bed…..

  23. I too was unconvinced that this was a challenge set by Rufus, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. 1d takes the chocolate Hobnob, although a star is deducted as usual for the appalling solecism of 5d. Thanks to Mister Ron (who should know better), MP and BD. 2*/3*
    PS apologies for only sporadic commenting. I have been doing the puzzles, but not always on the day they are published. Life’s more than a little difficult at the moment. Thanks for all the kind thoughts

    1. Thank you for making an appearance, TS. Even sporadic comments from you are better than nothing at all.
      Keep fighting the good fight – we need you to be present and correct at the next birthday bash!

  24. Thank you Mister Ron for giving us a good Monday run for our money. South went in more smoothly than the North. My bungings-in for 5d and 8d (both somewhat convoluted) required parsing – thanks BD for that and to MP for your weary hinting. Fav 16d with 3d (chestnut?) running up.

  25. I normally ace Rufus’s puzzles but I made hard work of this and wondered why. Who’da thunk Mister Ron?
    There were so many good clues here, huge smiles when I solved. Of course, I knew nothing of Dalglish, only of P.D. James fame, but a quick google solved that.
    Loved 20d, but, now I know the parsing of 5d, that takes the cake.
    Thanks Mister Ron for the entertainment, and to M’pops and BD for the hints. Is there a significance to the bike M’pops?

        1. I bought it for him on Thursday morning and wore myself out helping the little lad to learn to ride it. as well as everything else that is going on. No wonder that I am knackered

  26. 1*/3.5*. I couldn’t fully parse 1a, because I lazily plumped for “ball” rather than (abbbreviated) “ballet”, so couldn’t understand why the clue mentioned a King rather than a Queen. Nice bit of misdirection, methinks. My favourite was 16d. Thanks to the setter (I thought Rufus) and MP/BD.

  27. Thanks to Mister Ron and to Miffypops for the review and hints. A very nice start to the week. Needed the hints to parse 5&8d. Thought the lurker in 13a was very well hidden. 16d made me laugh, but my favourite was 1a. Last in was 1d. Was 2*/3* for me.

  28. Most of this was pretty plain sailing, up until I hit a brick wall with the NW corner – having given ‘blot’ for 1d (lame excuse: I thought it was an anagram). That error sent me diving into Wiki, hopefully to dredge up some facts about Kenny Dalglish that might fit with a long word beginning with ‘b’. Once I’d corrected ‘blot’, the 1a answer became ashamedly obvious! (all the more painfully so in that Kenny Dalglish and I attended the same school). Favourite – I especially liked the Orwell reference in 20d. Very relevant to the present!

  29. I found this a bit tricky verging on ***. Took a while to get started then answers came but slowly. Not really on the setters wavelength today. Needed the hints to explain 5d which I thought quite the daftest clue in a long time. Bad enough looking for bits of a foreign language without making an archaic English term, crazy! All one needed to solve the clue were the first two words, the rest was just window dressing.
    Apart from 5d, quite enjoyable in the sense that I managed to complete without recourse to the hints.
    Thx to all

  30. Half went in relatively easy and rest were a struggle, requiring Miffypops helpful hints. As usual I looked to fill in any missing across clues and then I was able to get the down holdouts. Agree 3d is a stretch for a staff. Not being a snooker player didn’t help with 6a and googling only gave me “rest” which didn’t work. Orwell’s 1984 was required reading in high school and at that time it was way in the future. Funny that year has now long come and gone. On reflection, not sure why I took so long over this.

  31. The Quickie pun is joined-up fun today if one overlooks the pronunciation of the second word! 🇪🇸

    1. Welcome to the blog Derek

      We already have a commenter who uses the name Derek, although we haven’t seen him for quite a while. Please could you qualify your name in order to avoid confusion.

      1. Hope THE Derek from Holland is Ok. I had noticed he had not been around for a time.

        1. I also hope that THE Derek from NL is Ok … I often followed his recipes … his choice of wine, though, was normally far too expensive!


    2. Glad you think so Derek. We try our hardest to supply reasoned explanations in plain English. Welcome from me too.

  32. Still struggling with 13a.
    Please elucidate further for an Essex thickie. Can’t find it in plain sight.

  33. Had to come to read MP’s review despite getting prepared to receive 10 guests on my terrace after a long day’s work. Busiest time of the year at the Jardin.
    Shall read the blog later as 62 comments seem like a daunting task.
    Really enjoyed this Rufus.
    And I really mean it.
    So many great clues.
    1d for one. Poor Hussain. Didn’t do so well in London last week.
    Thanks to Rufus and to MP for the ever so entertaining review.

  34. No problems, but I never got 1d. I racked my brain for ages, but to no avail.
    The crossword editor or the Times was on Radio 2 tonight explaining how cryptic crosswords work, quite interesting.
    Favourite was 21a, I guess Rufus must be a Liverpool to pick Kenny Dalgleish as his footballer, thanks MP and Rufus.

  35. A little into ** for difficulty. I should have known it wasn’t a Rufus, when the cryptic definitions fell with ease. :-) Last in 16d, which didn’t fall so easily.

  36. For 9d I split within to make an instruction ( with in) then added what some churches are.
    Not sure if that’s how it was meant to be read.
    Enjoyable starter for this week

  37. Made life very difficult for myself by smugly putting in ‘stick’ at 3d early on but did smile when I finally resorted to the blog. I can’t believe any normal brain could work out 5d although I did guess correctly. Favourite 21a. Nice to see setter comments. Thanks to all contributors.

  38. Enjoyable solve and must admit I did not spot it was not a Rufus. I was not clear about some of the parsing eg ball/balle. I did not have the difficulties in NW. My last three in were 16d (I thought of hair and cell but already had the checkers). Then 13a – until I spotted the lurker, after which 9d fell into place. 13 and 19a and 16 and 21d were my favourites. Thanks Mister Ron and MP(and BD) for explaining some of the parsing.

  39. Great crossword – 16d made me laugh but wondering why capital B for Bolt and Borders in 1d and 2d?

    1. Welcome to the blog

      They both fall under what I call ‘misleading capitals’ but the B for Bolt helps the surface reading and the Borders are a recognised area of the country.

    2. The capital B in Bolt goes nicely with the definition word RUN to misdirect you towards Usain Bolt. You will be misdirected less if you stop reading the clues.

  40. By the way lovely picture in 18d.
    A big hello to CS, Prolixic, Bufo, MP, BD, DT, kath and Gazza.

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