Toughie No 2499 by Stick Insect
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Having stated in the preamble to last Wednesday’s Toughie that there were no gimmicks only to find later that every across answer contained ‘un’ I examined today’s completed grid with a bit more care – but I can’t spot anything unusual. I thought that this was pretty straightforward – thanks to Stick Insect.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.
1a Brooding giant oddly destroyed island into bananas (10)
INCUBATION: bring together the even letters of ‘giant’, a Caribbean island and an anagram (bananas) of INTO.
6a Start prison disturbance (4)
STIR: triple definition, the first a verb to start or rouse.
9a Member gets over state of uncertainty (5)
LIMBO: a bodily member and the cricket abbreviation for over.
10a Receipts over year involving new team (4,5)
GATE MONEY: an adverb meaning over or ‘in the past’ and the abbreviation for year contain an anagram (new) of TEAM.
12a Out-of-the-way direction taken by channel-hopper (6,7)
REMOTE CONTROL: charade of an adjective meaning out-of-the-way or far off and a synonym for direction or management.
14a Performance in once jazzy musical composition (8)
NOCTURNE: insert a performance or stage act into an anagram (jazzy) of ONCE.
15a Mother left animal (6)
MAMMAL: a baby’s word for its mother followed by the abbreviation for left.
17a The setter’s stomach rejects large drink (6)
IMBIBE: the contracted way the setter would say that he is and a word for the third stomach of a ruminant (bible) (thanks BRB) without the clothing abbreviation for large.
19a Soldiers pull round to enter towers (8)
REGULARS: reverse a verb to pull or carry inside a verb meaning towers or looms.
21a Wages restored. Profits start after this (7,6)
PAYBACK PERIOD: knit together a synonym for wages, an adverb meaning restored or reinstated and what our friends across the pond call the punctuation mark in the middle of the clue.
24a In small functions, remove ties (5-4)
STAND-OFFS: insert a verb to remove (an item of clothing) into the clothing abbreviation for small and some mathematical functions.
25a Bring about prime spots for timepieces before lake (5)
IMPEL: identify the letters corresponding to prime numbers from ‘timepieces’ and add the abbreviation for lake.
26a Impersonate party animal no longer (4)
DODO: a verb to impersonate or mimic and a festive party.
27a Religious houses bar one good — astonishing! (10)
PRODIGIOUS: an adjective meaning religious (or professing to be religious) contains a bar or pole, the Roman number one and the abbreviation for good.
1d Useless section of welding is rejected (4)
IDLE: hidden in reverse.
2d Fine linen in two-thirds of university clubs (7)
CAMBRIC: the first two-thirds of the name of one of our major universities and the abbreviation for the card suit clubs.
3d British space vessel with provisions for storage (5,8)
BROOM CUPBOARD: string together an abbreviation for British, a synonym of space or capacity, a drinking vessel and a word for provisions that’s often paired with ‘lodgings’.
4d Squeezes cycling crew between leaders in team’s new set-up (8)
TIGHTENS: a rowing crew with its first letter cycled to the back goes inside the leading letters of the last three words of the clue.
5d Subject’s temperature dropped about eye (5)
OPTIC: start with a subject or issue and move the abbreviation used for temperature down a bit.
7d Brown meets President, almost showing rage (7)
TANTRUM: a word meaning brown (as either a verb or an adjective) precedes the surname of a current (at least for a few more months) president without his last letter.
8d You might get this straight from throne in Buckingham Palace? (5,5)
ROYAL FLUSH: cryptic definition where both the answer and ‘straight’ refer to a poker hand and throne means loo.
11d Making small cocktail of martini, using bottled Asti at the end (13)
MINIATURISING: an anagram (cocktail) of MARTINI USING containing the end letter of Asti.
13d At home, sat mock, previously unwilling (10)
INDISPOSED: start with an adverb meaning ‘at home’, add a verb meaning sat or modelled preceded by a slang verb to mock or denigrate.
16d Buck maybe takes two seconds when rising on holiday (8)
RECESSED: insert two different abbreviations for a second into what a buck is an example of and reverse the lot.
18d Lout turning up in audition put a stop to One Direction, perhaps (3,4)
BOY BAND: reverse an informal word for a lout and add what sounds like a verb meaning ‘put a stop to’. Here’s my favourite example of the answer, the Highwaymen:
20d Fuss over political party getting tense result in (3,2,2)
ADD UP TO: a synonym for fuss contains a political party from Northern Ireland and the grammatical abbreviation for tense.
22d Drink and a piece of cake first (5)
23d Beats first pair up for charity (4)
ALMS: reverse the first two letters of a verb meaning beats or thumps.
My podium houses 12a, 21a and 8d. Which clue(s) were awarded your rosettes?