Toughie No 2073 by Donnybrook
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty **/*** – Enjoyment ****
Fairly straightforward but pleasurable – thanks Donnybrook.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.
2a High Church breaking contract for event (12)
STEEPLECHASE: start with an adjective meaning high (of a price, say) then insert an abbreviation for church into a contract.
8a Japanese fighter in love (4)
ZERO: double definition – my last answer because although the answer seemed obvious from the checkers I didn’t know this Japanese WWII fighter aircraft.
9a Coin once passed round in secret session (8)
SESTERCE: an old Roman coin is hidden in reverse.
10a Vicious about God, priest and PM twice (8)
DISRAELI: reverse the first name of Mr Vicious and add the Egyptian sun god and an Old Testament priest.
11a Passion ultimately consumed groom (6)
NEATEN: the ultimate letter of ‘passion’ is followed by a past participle meaning consumed.
12a Very quiet shopping centre? (10)
PIANISSIMO: what’s found at the centre of the word ‘shopping’?
13a Sport’s scheduled for autumnal shade (6)
RUSSET: string together the abbreviation for a fifteen-a-side sport, the ‘S and a past participle meaning scheduled or arranged.
16a Fabric salesman in City travelling west (5)
CREPE: an abbreviated salesman goes inside the reversal of the area code for the City of London.
17a Jack for instance performing in 60 Minutes (6)
HONOUR: other examples could be a king or queen. Put an adverb meaning performing inside a time lasting 60 minutes.
18a Detective faked news — it’s in Observer (3-7)
EYE-WITNESS: an informal word for a private detective followed by an anagram (faked) of NEWS IT’S.
21a Put aside shilling given to communist (6)
STORED: weld together the abbreviation for a pre-decimal shilling, TO and an informal word for a communist.
23a Is it shot through with cinnamon and raisins? (8)
TURNOVER: a semi-all-in-one. This baked pastry comes from a charade of a shot or ‘go’ and an adverb meaning through or finished.
24a Scraps in shower after match? (8)
CONFETTI: cryptic definition of what may be showered on the happy couple.
25a Bible book showing last character in generation (4)
EZRA: insert the 26th character in a generation or period of time.
26a Grilled deer rotating in pieces (12)
INTERROGATED: an anagram (in pieces) of DEER ROTATING.
1d Riviera location here in France, and house in Florence (6)
MEDICI: this is the name of the Florentine family which wielded great political power for most of three centuries (and provided three Popes during that time). Stick together an informal term for the area of the French Riviera and the French word for ‘here’.
2d Instrument son on air plays with restrained piano? (9)
SOPRANINO: this is a type of wind instrument (new to me) which could be a saxophone or clarinet. It’s an anagram (plays) of SON ON AIR with the abbreviation for piano contained within it.
3d Two letters mentioned outrageous act (6)
EXCESS: the sound of two English letters joined together.
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4d Invite VIPs to get free background check (8,7)
POSITIVE VETTING: this is a security check into someone’s background. It’s an anagram (free) of INVITE VIPS TO GET.
5d Tragic scene wrong in European traditions (8)
ELSINORE: insert a wrong or act of ungodliness into the abbreviation for European and a word for traditions and knowledge passed down through the generations. The answer is the place where Hamlet did his dithering.
6d Animal in elevated position heard female (5)
HYENA: cement together a homophone of an adjective meaning in an elevated position and a female forename (one associated with an old battleaxe in Coronation Street).
7d Man inside cries out bad news (8)
SICKENER: insert an abbreviated male forename (a one-time mayor of London, say) into an anagram (out) of CRIES. That’s two clues in a row where we have to get names with no wordplay, which can only be got by guessing the answer from the definition and the rest of the clue then working backwards.
14d Patronised and desperate in South Atlantic (9)
SPONSORED: insert an adjective meaning desperate or urgent into the abbreviation for South and an informal and humorous term for the Atlantic ocean.
15d Coward‘s circle in place with Scottish links (8)
POLTROON: insert the circular letter into the abbreviation for place and append the name of a Scottish golf course where the Open Championship is regularly held to get one of my favourite words.
16d Shark, maybe clever, cleaned out Fleet Street boss (8)
CREDITOR: this shark is usually preceded by ‘loan’. Gut the word clever and add the usual newspaper boss.
19d Break in — sound pleased about it outside (6)
IRRUPT: reverse a verb to make a sound of pleasure inside IT.
20d Chain letter read out on radio (6)
SIERRA: one of the words from the Nato Phonetic Alphabet.
22d Security provider with stock to plunder (5)
RIFLE: double definition, the first a noun and the second a verb. Stock here is the wooden part of a firearm. ‘Security provider’ seems an odd definition – am I missing something?
Top clues for me were 10a, 12a and 14d. Do let us know which one(s) made your playlist.