DT 28899 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28899

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28899

A full review by gnomethang

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This puzzle was published on 17th November 2018

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***


Morning All! This puzzle was a slightly stiffer solver for a usual Saturday and all the better for it in my opinion.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a           Magistrates push for weightlifting exercise (5,5)
BENCH PRESS – A charade of the BENCH (magistrates) and PRESS for push.

6a           Could they be evens? Yes and no (4)
ODDS – The Starting Price that paradoxically might be evens.

9a           One unearthing facts about brand used by singer/actress (10)
RESEARCHER – A charade of RE (about) , SEAR/brand and then CHER, the perennial singer/actress.

10a         Dance needs bouncer, possibly (4)
BALL – Two definitions the bouncer being a delivery or ball in cricket.

12a         Actor Stephen receiving East German with hostile demeanour (6)
FROSTY – Stephen FRY including/receiving OST (East in German).

13a         Big party or, put another way, major bee (8)
JAMBOREE – An anagram (put another way, of MAJOR BEE.

15a         Deem fit for work of some importance (12)
CONSIDERABLE – -A charade of CONSIDER/deem and ABLE/fit for work.

18a         Worrying about son is what could make one even happier (12)
APPREHENSIVE – An anagram, indicated by ‘could make one’ of EVEN HAPPIER around S for son.

21a         Speculate — that makes the euro finally increase in value (8)
THEORISE – THE from the clue then the final letter in (eur)O and then RISE for increase in value.

22a         Fish both ways in sea (6)
MARLIN – Both ways, L(eft) and R(ight) inside the MAIN for sea.

24a         A hospital rejected rocket scientists (4)
NASA – Reverse/reject A SAN (an abbreviation of Sanatorium/hospital.

25a         High spirits belie uncle being distressed (10)
EBULLIENCE – A distressed anagram of BELIE UNCLE.

26a         Stumble knocking back lager (4)
SLIP – A reversal (knocking back) of PILS or lager.

27a         Know someone without a partner spurning the French area of London (10)
KENSINGTON – To know is to KEN. Add SING(le)TON or one without a partner but lose/spurn LE for ‘the’ in French.


1d           Wager about official having suffered loss (6)
BEREFT – Place a BET or wager around a REF(eree) or match official.

2d           One’s failed to turn up with food — that hurts! (2-4)
NO-SHOW – NOSH for food and OW for that hurts split 2-4.

3d           Frank talking with Heather excitedly about paintings etc nearby (5-2-5)
HEART-TO-HEART – Place an anagram (excitedly) of HEATHER around ART/Paintings and TO for ‘nearby’ or close.

4d           Support act at Glastonbury may play this (4)
ROCK – The Glastonbury festival is located on the famous hill/rock so the ROCK is supporting the artists who may also play ROCK music.

5d           Woman waiting up? (10)
STEWARDESS – A cryptic definition of the woman who serves food and drinks UP in the air in a plane.

7d           Strong words help upcoming set of people (8)
DIATRIBE – Reverse AID (it is upcoming in a down clue) and then add a TRIBE for a set of people.

8d           Was in the forces, losing heart, having joined up (8)
SOLDERED – Statrt with SOLDIERED (was in the forces) and then remove the middle letter (losing heart).

11d         RAF perhaps flying around Belgium and Borneo occasionally (12)
ABBREVIATION – Place AVIATION or flying around B, the IVR code foe Belgium and the odd/occasional letters in BoRnEo.

14d         Noise belts out that’s apparent (10)
OSTENSIBLE – An anagram, indicated by out, of NOISE BELTS.

16d         Detective’s assistant has to capture cheat (8)
HASTINGS – The detective in question being Hercule Poirot. Place HAS from the clue around STING for cheat/con.

17d         A smooth telemark, ultimately — one that’s found in Chamonix? (5-3)
APRES-SKI – A from the clue then PRESS for smooth/iron, the final letter in telemarK and then I for one. A nice consistent surface reading and my favourite clue here.

19d         Space-traveller‘s aircraft on time (6)
PLANET – Simply put a ‘PLANE for aircraft on T for Time.

20d         Trainee told where to find tea in Yorkshire? (6)
INTERN – A regional homophone (told) from Yorkshire where one might find t’tea IN T’URN.

23d         Regularly applauds good point (4)
PLUS – The even/regular letters in aPpLaUdS .

Thanks to the setter – I enjoyed this one.

5 comments on “DT 28899

  1. I agree that this was a bit stiffer than usual and, as Gnomey says, all the better for it.
    20d had mixed reviews on the day but it made me laugh so was my favourite.
    I took 4d to be a double definition with rock being a support or pillar of strength.
    Thanks to Mr Ron and Gnomethang.

    1. You are, as ever, correct gazza. I threw the answer in from the second part of the clue and checking letters but missed the Lady Di butler bit! Thanks!

  2. Good puzzle, despite 20d. I read 4d same as Gazza. It really is about time someone thought of a new way to clue 7d.

    Many thanks to setter and GT

  3. Thanks to reviewer and setter. I thoroughly enjoyed this one, laughed at 20d, and can’t believe that my last in was 16d, I got fixated on Watson!

  4. Thank you to the setter and to Gnomey.
    Needless to say I can’t remember much about this one apart from a few clues, and I can’t find the crossword either but I remember laughing at 20d.

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