DT 28603 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28603

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28603

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.                

Our weather continues to be hot and dry with today’s temperature getting close to 30 degrees C again. Our pohutukawa trees are just starting to display their scarlet flowers so Christmas cannot be far away.

Jay was in gentle mood again today . It was the Quickie pun that was our biggest sticking point as we kept trying to use the first three words.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Pure terror, no mistake, during hunt (6)
CHASTE : Remove a word meaning a mistake from the word terror and place the one letter that’s left inside a word for a hunt or pursuit.

5a     Bound to protect soldiers in ranks (6)
TIERED : Bound or held with string surrounds engineer soldiers.

10a     Branch office’s first dance (5)
LIMBO : A branch, possibly of a tree, and the first letter of office.

11a     Contact business that puts a limit on pitch (9)
TOUCHLINE : Contact, possibly with one’s finger, and business or occupation. The pitch here is a sports field.

12a     Well-mannered chap left beyond the outskirts of Eastbourne (7)
GENTEEL : A chap or man, then the first and last letters (outskirts) of Eastbourne and finally, the abbreviation for left.

13a     Emerging name with a fragrance (7)
NASCENT : The abbreviation for name, then ‘A’ from the clue and a fragrance.

14a     Composure required if dragon’s to be disturbed (4-5)
SANG-FROID : An anagram (to be disturbed) of IF DRAGONS.

17a     Races in to purchase something to relieve hunger (5)
BUTTY : These races could be on the Isle of Man and are inside a word meaning to purchase.

18a     Row about end of breeding animal in zoo (5)
TIGER : The last letter of breeding is inside a row or bank.

19a     Bug advanced carrying one likely to cause disease (9)
PESTILENT : A bug or nuisance, and advanced in the financial sense are separated by the Roman numeral for one.

21a     Drunken rake should welcome a fine form of entertainment (7)
KARAOKE : An anagram (drunken) of RAKE contains ‘A’ from the clue and a two letter way of showing fine or acceptable.

23a     Agitated air following rejection of cheese and wine (7)
MADEIRA : A cheese that originated in the Netherlands is reversed and followed by an anagram (agitated) of AIR.

25a     Crooked advertiser — I held out and negotiated (9)
TRAVERSED : An anagram (crooked) of ADVERTiSER once the letter ‘i’ has been removed.

26a     Gas area on the west of Oregon (5)
OZONE : The west of Oregon is its first letter and then an area or region.

27a     Single line found in smooth traffic-free area of street (6)
ISLAND : Single gives us the Roman numeral one and then the abbreviation for line is inside a word to smooth by rubbing with an abrasive paper.

28a     Two ways to be humble (6)
MODEST : The first way can be a style and the second is an abbreviation for a type of road.


2d     Person creating buzz over article (5)
HUMAN : Another word for the sound made by bees and one of the indefinite articles.

3d     Chatted in favour of being romantically attached? (6,3)
SPOKEN FOR : Chatted or verbalised and then ‘in favour of’.

4d     Applaud European vote on quota raised (5)
EXTOL : The abbreviation for European, then the mark put on a voting paper and the reversal of a quota or allocation.

5d     Sour end to cooked filet mignon (9)
TOURNEDOS : An anagram (cooked) of SOUR END TO.

6d     Spirit stifled by cabinet hostility (5)
ETHOS : A lurker hiding in the last two words of the clue.

7d     Heroic hospital department about to become focus of disturbance (9)
EPICENTRE : A word meaning heroic or classic, then a hospital department and the two letters meaning about or with reference to.

8d     Co-ordinates of signal readjusted (6)
ALIGNS : An anagram (readjusted) of SIGNAL.

9d     Watch, getting shilling admission (6)
SENTRY : The abbreviation of shilling from pre-decimal currency days and a word meaning admission.

15d     Africans shifting earnings across Italy (9)
NIGERIANS : An anagram (shifting) of EARNINGS that includes the IVR code for Italy.

16d     Downtrodden and in a hurry to underpin work (9)
OPPRESSED : An artistic work, is on top of a word meaning in a hurry or being rushed.

17d     Cover eyes, having difficulty accommodating student congregation (9)
BLINDFOLD : The abbreviation for a learner or student is inside a word for a difficulty, then a word for a congregation in its pastoral sense.

18d     Develop a liking for scene with couple on the radio (4,2)
TAKE TO : A motion picture usage of a word for a scene and a word that sounds like (on the radio) a couple.

20d     After time, quietens kids (6)
TEASES : The abbreviation for time and then quietens or becomes less severe.

22d     Area report’s written up to include performance on stage (5)
OPERA : A reversed lurker hiding in the first two words of the clue.

23d     Spoilt young woman married the first man (5)
MADAM : The abbreviation for married and then the Bible’s first man.

24d     Images of prisoner held by discontented interrogators (5)
ICONS : Interrogators are dis-contented by removing all but the first and last letters. These surround a word for a prisoner.

Quickie pun     wall    +    hoard     =      warlord

51 comments on “DT 28603

  1. Well I was on for a ** time with the answers flowing in quite easily, until I was left with just 20d, and for the life of me I just couldn’t solve it. I had the correct parsing, the first letter gave me that confidence, but I just couldn’t see it. I ended up giving in and used some electronic help.

    I felt that using a similar construction in 5a and 18a was a little unusual.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

      1. Hi Senf,

        It nearly did, but Jay was wise to use “rank” and “row” separately, even though they were cluing the same word!

  2. Jay at his best again, very enjoyable, and finished at a gallop – **/****.

    After solving 4d and 26a, I started to think pangram but that didn’t work out.

    Candidates for favourite – 1a, 11a, 17a, 18d, and 24d; and the winner is 18d.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  3. 1.5* / 5*. As the 2Ks say this is Jay in gentle mode today but still as enjoyable as ever. The toughest task is to try to pick a favourite so I’ll just say they are all candidates.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks, particularly for putting me out of my misery with the Quickie pun. I struggled having put “weir” for 1a (it does fit the definition and the checkers), and I irritated Mrs RD by repeatedly saying my version of the first two across clues out loud to get them to sound like “weird”.

  4. Nice and gentle */*** 😃 Favourites 19 & 28 across. Thanks to Jay and the 2 x Ks 😎, don’t forget the sun hats ⛱ small typo in the hint to 27a 😉

  5. Very enjoyable, everything flowed nicely for me today, except the parsing of 27a. I had the S and L from single and line in my head and couldn’t work out where smooth came from, thanks to 2K’s for the explanation – now why didn’t I see that ? ! So many lovely clues , 17a made me chuckle.
    Thanks to all

  6. Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one very much, a steady solve, only held up by 17a&7d, which were the last two in. Started with 2d, finished with 7d, which was my favourite. Had to drag 5d from the memory bank. Also liked 27a. Was 3 ✳ / 4 ✳ for me.

  7. Gentle Jay, as others have said, but none the worse for that.
    Plenty of ticks on the page with the honours going to 7d.

    Thought it rather sad that the definition of 18a is ‘animal in zoo’.

    Thanks to Jay and to our sun-drenched 2K’s – scrummy pic at 5d!

  8. Help please. What Quickie pun are the 2Ks and Rabbit Dave talking about and where do the daily puns come from?

    This has puzzled me for ages.
    Thanks to setter and the 2Ks. I really liked this one, just wondered about the grammar in 3d.

    1. The Quickie pun comes from the Quick Crossword that is published alongside the Cryptic. The first two or three across answers make up a homophone of another word or saying. If there are more than two answers involved, the printed version will have the relevant clues italicised. Usually.

    2. Rod, every day a number of the across answers in the Quick Crossword on the back page can be combined to form an often excruciating pun. On most days it is just the first two across answers but occasionally it can be the first three or four. In the paper, if the pun consists of more than two words, the requisite number of clues forming the pun are normally but not always italicised. People solving on line do not enjoy the advantage of italics which can be confusing for them.

      1. Oops. My reply crossed with MalcolmR’s, who I see has already answered you – much more concisely than me!

  9. Some very elegant surfaces and clueing in this excellent Wednesday offering from Jay with 17a across my favourite for the laugh out loud moment. The quality and variety of clues made this a 2* /5* crossword.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  10. Straightforward with plenty to amuse along the way. SE corner slowed me down a bit. Hard to pick a Fav from several goodies but I really liked the surface of 24d. Thank you Jay and the 2Kiwis (envy you the warmth particularly as we are apparently in for a cold spell). ☀️❄️.

  11. A thoroughly enjoyable crossword to brighten up a week so far smitten with the need to bring drain rods into play in our premises (the latter a fine follow up to a weekend sighting of a genuine rainbow’s end!). Ploughed through this one rapidly, until held back by sheer ignorance of the 5d cuisine, plus a pathetic failure to see the perfectly obvious solution to 17d. Favourite has to be 17a – fond memories of the jam butty mines in Scouseland.

  12. Ryan helping me understand and tune in to these crosswords. Im getting about 50% without ‘assistance

  13. Lot to like in this puzzle aptly described by the antipodean reviewers as gentle. 17d and 11a were my top clues.

  14. Excellent if straightforward puzzle. Some cleverly hidden lurkers and lots of lovely anagrams. I hope no setter thinks to include the trees that the 2Kiwis mention in the intro😀
    Thx to all

  15. Another very entertaining and well clued Wednesday puzzle fro Jay. My dictionary has 14a as a nine letter word, but hey ho. Thanks to setter and 2Ks. Most enjoyable.

  16. Enjoyable enough solved over lunch in Ghana with a favourite clue of 11a and rating from this solver at 1.5/3. Many comments on the pun which I don’t normally look at but curiosity got the better of me. Having solved it, then read it, read it again – this time standing on my head – I still could not make anything of it. Had to resort to The 2K’s help. Ugh! Not a pretty thing.

    Thanks to Jay and K x 2.

  17. Great puzzle, the right level of challenge for me with nothing obscure – 7d was last in (like Heno) and my favourite….

  18. Very enjoyable puzzle today.

    11a held me up a bit, but I eventually got there without electronic help. Hurrah!

    Neede help with the parsing of a few, though.

    Thanks to the 2 Kiwis and to the setter.

    Off to batten down the hatches before storm Caroline now…..wind is getting up already.

  19. As always , on the right side of tricky , which is a bit challenging but no obscurities.
    Thanks Jay and also to the 2 Kiwis.

  20. Bit late today, I found this puzzle tricky in parts with lots if imaginative cluing so going for a 2.5*/4*.
    Hard to pick a favourite, liked 17a,and 5d-my favourite steak
    Thanks to 2k’s for the usual excellent pics, 10a reminds me of the warning I once saw written across the bottom of a motorway service station toilet door- “Beware Limbo Dancers “

  21. Another solidly clued and enjoyable puzzle from Jay. Interesting how yesterday there were several comments regarding the apparent surfeit of anagrams, but today, with just one fewer, no such observations. Perception is everything!

    My two favourite clues were 1a and 28a.

    Many thanks to Mr Mutch and the 2Ks. I remember from last year your lovely picture of the local pohutukawa trees in their full glory, you are very fortunate indeed.

  22. I agree, Jay in a gentler mood today.
    I’m unable to pick a fave, you’re right, RD, they’re all candidates for fave.
    I no longer eat mammals, but the pic at 5d is very tempting.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis for the fun review. Enjoy your warm weather.

  23. I’m another straggler today.
    I agree with the ratings given by the Kiwis.
    11a held me up – that ‘business’ is always one I forget and, anyway, I was thinking of the wrong kind of pitch.
    I was slow with 7d too – no real excuses for that one.
    My main problem was 14a – having the first letter I decided that the first word had to be ‘self’ so it couldn’t be an anagram . . . Oh dear! Got there eventually.
    I liked 1 and 17a and 3 and 23d.
    Thanks to Jay and to the K’s – off to have a go at the Toughie now.

  24. Thank you Jay and Kiwis, a really neat set of clues and explanations – 28a was my favourite (but got totally blocked on 16a – kept thinking “pink floyd “” but don’t know why and it messed up 8d!?!)

  25. 14a – Paddy Roberts wrote and performed a wonderful song about an Englishman and his sang froid, Google it definitely worth a giggle. Wavelength thing as usually I struggle on Wednesday but today I sailed through. Perhaps it is because I have had haircut and feel a lot less scruffy :yahoo:

  26. Struggled more than I should with this one. Just could not get on Jay’s wavelength today for some of the clues. Completed without using the hints so pleased with that. Just not quite on it today?

    Clue of the day 3d followed by 16d. Last in 20d.

    Rating *** / ***

    Thanks to the 2Ks and Jay.

  27. Very enjoyable puzzle,1.5*/4*. I was pleased to complete this one without looking anything up. Favourite clues 14a and 17a. Thank you to all concerned.

  28. Morning all.
    Think we were a bit lucky to get away with just one typo as we had put this together in less than ideal conditions. For a start there was a hospital appointment that was at what is our usual solving and blog writing time and that caused time pressures later on with other commitments. Then when we were putting the blog together we found, (as we did last time that the checking regime was in place) that we kept getting ‘timed out’ and we had to re-do some of it. However we did get there in the end with a loud sigh of relief when we could click the button that said “Schedule”. None of this diminished the pleasure we always get from solving and blogging Jay puzzles.

  29. Tackled it anticlockwise and no clues held much resistance.
    An enjoyable solve none the less.
    Thanks to Jay and to 2kiwis for the review.

  30. On the gentle side, but nevertheless enjoyable: */****. My favourite was 5d – yum yum! Many thanks to Jay, and to the 2 Kiwis.

  31. Oops! I forgot to comment… good quality crossword from Jay. All fairly clued and no holdups of note. 7d was top clue for me and 2/4* overall.
    Thanks to Jay, and to the 2K’s for their review. 30degrees…huh!

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