ST 2950 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2950

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2950

A full review by crypticsue

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This puzzle was published on 6th May 2018

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ****

Solved later in the day than usual, following a visit to the lovely Salutation Gardens in Sandwich. It didn’t take long to solve so I was soon out in our garden enjoying the warm sunshine. No particular favourites but no special grumps either

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Hit an alien, given new order to destroy (10)
ANNIHILATE – An anagram (given new order) of HIT AN ALIEN

6a    They measure resistance from government department, initially (4)
OHMS – Measure resistance; On Her Majesty’s Service (initials found on missives from Government departments

9a    Behaviour that’s becoming odd — almost lure into trap at first (7)
DECORUM – DECOy (almost all of a word meaning to lure into a trap) goes first before RUM (odd)

10a    Arm Sikh that’s agitated in region of India (7)
KASHMIR – An anagram (that’s agitated) of ARM SIKH

12a    Shocking process as court badly interrupts political event (13)
ELECTROCUTION – An anagram (badly) of COURT ‘interrupts’ ELECTION (political event)

14a    King Edward, for example, as source of pessimistic law (6)
MURPHY – An informal name for a potato, a King Edward for example; a law which states that if something can go wrong, it will

15a    Exhausted layabout (8)
DEADBEAT – The first of the definitions is shown as 4-4 in the BRB, the layabout is correctly shown as (8)

17a    Passing within three laps, in general (8)
ELAPSING – Lurking within threE LAPS IN General

19a    Do some singing, playing well (6)
INFORM – Singing in the sense of turning informer

22a    Beyond doubt, accomplished by popular argument against trial (13)
INCONTESTABLE – IN (popular) CONTEST (argument) ABLE (accomplished)

24a    Communication from John or Paul, say, in English post (7)
EPISTLE – Both St John and St Paul wrote EPISTLES – ST (John or Paul, say) inserted into E (English) PILE (post)

25a    Couple crossing river, that is plain (7)
PRAIRIE – PAIR (couple) ‘crossing’ R (river) followed by IE (that is)

26a    Bomb in military vehicle (4)
TANK – TANK and bomb are both informal terms for failure; the second definition is more obvious

27a    Where countdown begins before social gathering for those present (10)
ATTENDANCE – AT TEN (where a countdown begins) before DANCE (social gathering)


1d    Assistant‘s brainwave, moving article from bottom to top (4)
AIDE – Move the A (indefinite article) at the bottom of IDEA (brainwave) to the top

2d    Kind of family crazy uncle and aunt rule, primarily (7)
NUCLEAR – An anagram (crazy) of UNCLE plus the primary letters of Aunt and Rule

3d    Animal, one of particular colour, seen in tree (5,8)
HORSE CHESTNUT – HORSE (animal), one colour of which can be CHESTNUT

4d    Creates boundary — in length, it’s under one mile (6)
LIMITS – L (length) and ITS (from the clue), the latter going under I (one) M (mile)

5d    Produce some spin, perhaps, for aggressive business deal (8)
TAKEOVER – TAKE [an] OVER in a game of cricket, perhaps by using spin bowling

7d    Male left in pit in lowest level for shift, for instance (7)
HEMLINE – HE (male) and L (left) inserted into MINE (pit)

8d    Bound issue turned up in early part of year (10)
SPRINGTIME – SPRING (bound) followed by a reversal (turned up in a Down clue) of EMIT (issue)

11d    Person consulted expressing no interest, as some might say (8,5)
SOUNDING BOARD – A homophone (as some might say) of SOUNDING BORED (expressing no interest)

13d    The speaker’s standing on section of facade or barrier (10)
IMPEDIMENT – IM (the speaker’s) standing on PEDIMENT (section of facade)

16d    Blue during fall, after last of deciduous leaves (8)
INDECENT – IN DESCENT (after fall) after the S that is the last letter of deciduous leaves

18d    You finally invested in case it has lots to offer (7)
AUCTION – U (the final letter of you) ‘invested’ in ACTION (case)

20d    A couple of cricket events go on too long (7)
OVERRUN – At the risk of sounding like the man with the repetition radar, that’s the second cricket over reference in the Downs. OVER and RUN are a couple of things that happen at cricket matches

21d    Like cliché about phosphorus being important element in diet (6)
STAPLE – P (chemical symbol for phosphorus) inserted into STALE (like cliché)

23d    Some swimming energetically in part of pool (4)
GENE – And a lurker to finish – fond in some of swimminG ENErgetically


2 comments on “ST 2950

  1. Took me longer than it did for CS – nothing unusual in that!
    16d was the last to fall and I barely suppressed a chuckle over 20d – apologies to RD.

    Thanks for the review, CS.

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