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ST 3081

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3081

A full review by gnomethang

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This puzzle was published on 8th November 2020

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Morning All! Pretty standard Sunday puzzle with a small growl at 31a.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a           Building work I check inside arena (8)
RIVETING – Place “I VET”/I check inside a RING or arena.

5a           Cold — quite rotten? (6)
OFFISH – Quite rotten might be OFF-ISH.

9a           Boater at once is fashionable (8)
CANOEIST – An anagram (fashionable) of AT ONCE IS.

10a        Cooler marketing is working (6)
PRISON – PR (Public Relations) for Marketing then ID from the clue and then ON for working.

12a        One having been blown away, realise winds close again (6)
RESEAL – Make an anagram (it winds) of REAL(i)SE having had I for one removed (blown away).

13a        Crystal: good in possession of pirate? (3,5)
CUT GLASS – Place G for Good in a CUTLASS – or something hat might be in possession of a Pirate. Aaaaarrrrgh!

15a        Layer of eggs on cheese for a moment (7)
BRIEFLY – A FLY or layer of eggs (don’t even bother with hen!) after (or ON in an across clue) the French cheese of BRIE.

16a        Deep hole, better (4)
WELL – Two definitions – A deep watering hole and an adjective for recovered in health.

20a        A cat bit (4)
ATOM – A from the clue followed by the TOM cat.

21a        Photograph place for event (4,3)
SHOT PUT – An athletics event.  A SHOT of a camera and to PUT or place/set.

25a        Absent-minded drunk armed with gin (8)
DREAMING – A drunk anagram of ARMED and/with GIN.

26a        Conclusion: finished twice! (6)
UPSHOT – Two synonyms for finished – your time is UP and you are SHOT/done/out of here.

28a        Being gone for ages, call father back (6)
APEMAN – A reversal (back) of NAME/call and PA/father.

29a        Greek god, model with sculpture of Odin (8)
POSEIDON – To POSE or model with an anagram (sculpture of) ODIN.

30a        Passionate character in book is serenaded (6)
KISSER – A hidden word IN boo K IS SER enaded.

31a        Wisest of the wise perhaps receiving first of awards, in act of generosity (8)
BESTOWAL – A bit cheeky this. OWLS are proverbially wise. This means that the wisest of these might be the BEST OWL. It receives or includes the first letter in A(wards) – BEST OW (A) L.


1d           Log on string (6)
RECORD – RE: for On/about and then a CORD or string.

2d           Go like a commercial vehicle? (6)
VANISH – As in the 5a clue. ‘like a’ or ‘quite’ (or even fairly/pretty) can all be sort of replaced by “-ISH”. Hence like a VAN/commercial vehicle might be said to be VAN-ISH.

3d           References in Thai sure to require translation (8)
THESAURI – An anagram (it requires translation) of THAI SURE.

4d           Bouquet held by soprano serenely (4)
NOSE – A hidden word is held by sopra NO SE renely.

6d           Scrap pinched by adversary, look around for food (6)
FORAGE – A RAG or scrap inside/pinched by a FOE or adversary.

7d           Broke, as I spend a lot (2,6)
IN SPADES – A broken anagram of AS I SPEND.

8d           Perfect life initially occupying dirty home — really? (8)
HONESTLY – HONE for perfect and then the initial letter of L(ife) inside a STY or dirty home.

11d        Standard ablaze in dock (7)
QUALITY – ALIT of ablaze inside a QUAY/dock.

14d        Name the cooking gas (7)
METHANE – An anagram (cooking) of NAME THE.

17d        Difficult second book (8)
HARDBACK – A charade of HARD/difficult and BACK/second.

18d        Limbs eels and frog misplaced (8)
FORELEGS – An anagram, indicated by misplaced, of both EELS and FROG.

19d        Bankrupt corralling politician — that is most rough (8)
BUMPIEST – Place an MP/politician and I.E. for Id Est./that is inside BUST for bankrupt.

22d        Run through with stake, I look anaemic! (6)
IMPALE – Another way of saying “I look anaemic” might be “I’M PALE”.

23d        Dark image when commercial breaks appear (6)
SHADOW – An AD(vertisement) or commercial is inside/breaking SHOW for appear.

24d        A huge amount, almost all discordant (6)
ATONAL – A TON (a huge amount) and almost AL(l).

27d        Nothing, like a lot (4)
LOVE – Two definitions – LOVE for nothing n Tennis and to adore/like a lot.


2 comments on “ST 3081
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    1. Me too! The clue that really got me into cryptic crosswords was ‘Hostel would hold back little hooter (5)’ — it was in a Christmas Radio Times, one of the few clues we had left in a mostly-completed jumbo puzzle, and I was so excited when I finally worked it out.

      Thanks Gnomethang, and Dada.

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