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DT 28863

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28863

A full review by crypticsue

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This puzzle was published on 6th October 2018

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

I solve this late on Saturday afternoon after a horrible rainy journey back from Oxfordshire – there was so much to enjoy, apart from (as a solver) the homophone in 21a that didn’t work for quite a few of us (there’s a big NO written by this one on the newspaper) and (as a reviewer) the number of times you notice that you are doing something with individual letters, whether abbreviations or otherwise. Without those annoyances, I’d have been tempted to award a rare 5* Saturday enjoyment rating

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Escort service provider perhaps — bribe with £500 (6,6)
GREASE MONKEY – GREASE (bribe, as in grease one’s palm with silver) MONKEY (slang term for £500)

9a    Encourage team with player sent off after try (7)
HEARTEN – TEN (a team of eleven players after one has been sent off) goes after HEAR (try)

10a    See a book spy pocketed, not being secure (7)
MOVABLE – V (vide – the Latin word for see) A (from the clue) and B (book) ‘pocketed’ by MOLE (spy)

11a    Drip in hostelry coming back for lots of drinks (5-2)
BOOZE-UP – OOZE (drip) in a reversal (coming back) of PUB (hostelry)

12a    California men in charge concerned with heat (7)
CALORIC – CAL (California) OR (Ordinary Ranks, soldiers, men) IC (in charge)

13a    Still engages a second worker in brewery (5)
YEAST – YET (still) ‘engages’ A (from the clue – again!) and S (second)

14a    Strong wine and potatoes from Indian, they provide temporary relief (9)
PORTALOOS – PORT (strong wine) ALOOS (Indian potatoes) – my favourite Across clue

16a    Like some carphones made by robots? (5-4)
HANDS-FREE – because of course as a general rule, robots using in manufacturing things don’t have hands

19a    American soldier going after my dog (5)
CORGI – GI (American soldier) going after COR (my)

21a    Guide broadcast of person cooking spicy food (7)
COURIER – This is supposed to be a homophone (broadcast) of a CURRYER (person cooking spicy food) but I’m not entirely sure which accent you’d use to make it work??

23a    Large number move aimlessly forward round island (7)
MILLION – MILL (move aimlessly) and ON (forward) go round I (Island)

24a    Puzzles formulated in games (7)
ENIGMAS – An anagram (formulated) of IN GAMES

25a    Moves softly, softly forward in games (7)
TIPTOES – P (piano, musical instruction to play softly) and TO (forward) in TIES (games)

26a    Half-heartedly cleaning mule station (7,5)
CHARING CROSS – Remove one of the Rs at the heart of CHARRING (cleaning) and follow with CROSS – a mule being a cross between a male donkey and a female horse


1d    Ran gaol cruelly as alternative to porridge (7)
GRANOLA – An anagram (cruelly) of RAN GAOL

2d    Beg, heading off from downtown area before time (7)
ENTREAT – Remove the ‘heading’ from cENTRE (downtown) and add A (area) and T (time)

3d    Two features of seaside introducing parking for one that likes paddling (9)
SANDPIPER – SAND and PIER (two features of seaside) ‘introducing’ P (parking)

4d    Operatic heroine’s career’s beginning to take off (5)
MIMIC – The heroine of La Boheme plus the ‘beginning’ of Career

5d    Short literary work Fitzgerald produced after a month (7)
NOVELLA – ELLA (Fitzgerald) goes after NOV (the month of November)

6d    Ban so restricts business expert (7)
EMBARGO – ERGO (so) ‘restricts’ MBA (Master of Business Administration, business expert)

7d    Husband cheating initially trapped by investigator, the old twister (6,7)
CHUBBY CHECKER – Sublimely brilliant wordplay and definition – HUBBY (husband) trapped between the C at the beginning of Cheating and CHECKER (investigator)

8d    One working in the kitchen cooked sports cuisine (13)
PERCUSSIONIST – Do enough cryptic crosswords (or I suppose play enough percussion instruments) and you’ll know that when you see ‘kitchen’ in a crossword clue, you are usually relates to the percussion section of an orchestra. The player you’d find in that section is an anagram (cooked) of SPORTS CUISINE

15d    Like dodgy joint that could give me haircut (9)
RHEUMATIC – An anagram (could give) of ME HAIRCUT

17d    Some misdemeanour is hard to encourage (7)
NOURISH – Lurking in some misdemeaNOUR IS Hard

18d    Something sparkling cook gently keeps hot (7)
SHIMMER – SIMMER (cook gently) ‘keeps’ H (hot)

19d    Song itinerant plays in company (7)
CALYPSO – An anagram (itinerant) of PLAYS inserted into CO (company)

20d    Calamitous sport with oval ball in America takes over (7)
RUINOUS – RU (Rugby Union – sport with oval ball) IN (from the clue) US (America) ‘takes’ O (over)

22d    Geordie teacher got up out of bed (5)
RISEN – A reversal (got up in a Down clue) of NE (Geordie) SIR (teacher)

5 comments on “DT 28863

  1. Thanks Sue, my answers all match yours but I have no doubt that, once again, I will be informed tomorrow that I didn’t get a single answer correct.

    I see today we have that soldier and his amazing dog again.

    I’m having big problems accessing the site as, I saw yesterday, are others. Every time I hit the ‘home’ button I’m taken straight to Monday’s page.

    Still I’ll persevere as I can’t be without my daily fix of the excellent blog.

  2. After one or two comments last Saturday, I’m still wondering how else courier might be pronounced. I only know it in the way you have described CS.

  3. Kitchen and percussion… well, you learn something new every day, as they say. Thank you for explaining that one! I shall go and find some spoons to play…

  4. Thanks for the comprehensive review, I needed to be told where the ‘v’ in movable came from, shame on me with a Latin A-level!
    The homophone works completely for me, NE Wales transplanted to E Midlands accent….
    And thanks to the setter for a wonderful puzzle – grease monkey and portaloo, crackers both.

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