Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29502
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs where the sun o peeping through at the moment, but we can look forward to rain later. I see that Nicola Sturgeon told the people of Scotland to prepare for a digital Christmas yesterday: I wonder how many digits the people of Scotland will raise in reply?
Today’s puzzle was not overly difficult for me, though one or two clues needed teasing out.
In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ANSWER buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.
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1a Venues where one’s tried making dates, with space limited (10)
COURTROOMS – Another verb for ‘dates (romantically)’ wrapped round a word ofr ‘space’.
6a Wager placed by a very old character (4)
BETA – Another word for a wager followed by A (from the clue).
9a Food things carried out by tumbler (6,4)
SPRING ROLL – An item of Chinese food, or two manoeuvres a tumbler might carry out.
10a Greek grub takes fine time to arrive? (4)
FETA –Abbreviations for Fine followed by Estimated Time of Arrival.
12a Having a night out? (6)
ASLEEP – Out for the count rather than out on the tiles.
13a Acceptance I should split costs — I’m bust (8)
STOICISM – Anagram (bust) of COSTS I’M, wrapped round I )from the clue), giving some philosophical acceptance.
15a Party costume outfit for ironing? (7,5)
EVENING DRESS – This costume for a posh party could also be a phrase for ironing a frock.
18a Grouped in ‘Archaic/Old’ — should e-readers disregard? (4-8)
COLD-SHOULDER – Hidden in the clue.
21a Support cricket side being put in again (6-2)
FOLLOW-ON – Double definition: continuing support for a project; or the situation where a side well behind on irst innings can ne asked to bat again by the opposition.
22a Four-foot boat? (6)
PEDALO – Cryptic definition of a seaside attraction that takes two people to propel it using their feet.
24a I’m a farm animal and am kept in pound (4)
LAMB – AM (from the clue) inserted into the abbreviation for a pound avoirdupois.
25a One’s tasty if fresh, with gin in a cocktail (4,6)
FISH FINGER – anagram (in a cocktail) of IF FRESH and GIN.
26a In Spain so long, but no one knocked back drink (4)
SODA – Remove the Roman numeral for one from the Spanish word for ‘goodbye’, then reverse (knocked back) the result.
27a Bashed in passing drunk despised around women’s group (10)
SIDESWIPED – Anagram (drunk) of DESPISED wrapped round the aacronym for the women’s organisation noted for jam and Jerusalem.
1d One has a share in the lead in Central American country, losing 33 per cent (2-4)
CO-STAR – A Central American country (5,4) has one-third of its letters removed to leave this term from stage and screen.
2d Out-of-control gunner guilty — nothing odd about that (6)
UNRULY – Alternate even-numbered letters (nothing odd) from gUnNeR gUiLtY.
3d Single-minded concentration that Tube driver needs? (6,6)
TUNNEL VISION – Cryptic definition of something which might (but not in the medical sense) be useful to the driver of an Underground train.
4d Paddles topless and bottomless — rude! (4)
OARS – Remove the first and last letters (topless and bottomless) from a word for ‘rude’.
5d Like a protestor, agitated, lit many houses alight! (10)
MILITANTLY – Anagram (agitated) of LIT MANY, wrapped round another word for ‘alight’.
7d Keep watch on ship — it’s a cosmetic thing (8)
EYELINER – Split the answer (3,5) and you have ‘keep watch on’ and a type of large ship.
8d Metal arm is taut inside, having over-reactive nerves (8)
ALARMIST – Hidden in the clue.
11d Say kite’s electronic rival gets snagged in tree — perfect picture! (5-3,4)
BIRD’S-EYE VIEW – Put together a creature of which a kite is an example, plus the ‘S from the clue, and a type of tree which can grow to a great age often found in churchyards, wrapped round the usual abbreviation for Electronic and a word for ‘rival’ or ‘struggle’.
14d These days, initially, this could be commercial (4,6)
ANNO DOMINI – The Latin phrase for the current system of dates. Abbreviated to its initials, it could be a short word for a commercial.
16d Scraps in short sleeves, perhaps, cycling (8)
SCUFFLES – Start with a description which could apply to a short-sleeved shirt, then move the last letter to the front to get the untidy fights needed by the answer.
17d Small ode — ‘In a state / Slid, not straight’ (8)
SLALOMED – Anagram (in a state) of SMALL ODE.
19d Mental block getting ring off? (4-2)
HANG-UP – Double definition: a 1960s(?) term for a psychological issue; or the act of a ending a telephone conversation in the days before mobile phones.
20d Mr Chi Minh walked, speedy thing (3,3)
HOT ROD – Split this (2,4) and you have the other part of the name of the leader of the Vietnamese revolution and another word for ‘walked’.
23d One walks in this small garden (4)
SHOE – Small followed by a verb for an action carried out in the garden.
The Quick Crossword pun WAY + TIN + GROOM = WAITING-ROOM