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ST 3103

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3103

A full review by Rahmat Ali

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This puzzle was published on 11th April 2021

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

Greetings from Kolkata. I now have the pleasure of writing the review for a puzzle of the Sunday Telegraph. While going through 12a, I really started looking back to the good old days of my childhood of 1967 when I got double promotion to a higher class for the second time. The new books had already been bought when, one day, within the first week of the commencement of our class, I was taken from my class on the ground floor to a room on the first floor where Mrs. Wainwright, our School Principal, began to put me to various types of tests and from there, after some time, I was taken to Class II on the first floor itself. A new list of books to be purchased was handed over to me. But I did not discard my previous English book. It had the rhyme, “Jack Sprat could eat no fat. His wife could eat no lean …” with a big cartoon showing a lean Jack Sprat pushing a cart in which his fatty wife with chubby cheeks, occupying almost the entire space, sat facing him. At home, I used to open that book quite often to have a glimpse of those ‘strange’ chubby cheeks.

The clues of Dada were very enjoyable. I basked in working out the explanations. My favourites were 12a and 13a from the Across clues and 5d and 8d from the Down clues.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Joint not functioning, get to work (7,4)
KNUCKLE DOWN: A charade of KNUCKLE (joint) and DOWN (not functioning)

9a    Marketing wickedness has secured a win (7)
PREVAIL: PR (marketing) and EVIL (wickedness) with insertion (has secured) of A from the clue

10a    Cotton fabric feature with trimming in topaz (6)
CHINTZ: CHIN (feature) and (with) cutting but leaving the edges (trimming) in T[O][P][A]Z from the clue

12a    Looking back, what Jack Sprat’s wife did about fine material (7)
TAFFETA: Reversal (looking back) of ATE FAT (what Jack Sprat’s wife did) around (about) F (fine)

13a    Possible sound of patient reporting a cleaner? (7)
ATISHOO: Homophone (reporting) as A TISSUE (a cleaner) leading to the definition

14a    Bird saved by scoter, geese knocked over (5)
EGRET: Hidden inside or part of (saved by) scoTER GEese, but in a reversal fashion (knocked over)

15a    Secured by belt, reversing down — motorist slower? (5,4)
SPEED TRAP: Contained in (secured by) STRAP (belt) is the reversal (reversing) of DEEP (down)

17a    Shame communist has it on record (9)
DISCREDIT: RED (communist), with (has) IT from the clue, following (on) DISC (record)

20a    Vital organsurvivor? (5)
LIVER: Double definition; the first is a noun being an essential part inside the body of a vertebrate and the second also a noun deriving from the root of the verb ‘to survive’, that is, ‘to live’ and meaning someone who lives their life in the way specified

22a    Drink alongside empty barrel is wine (7)
CHABLIS: CHA (drink) having next to it (alongside) B[A][R][R][E]L without the inner letters (empty barrel) and IS from the clue

24a    Holiday camp performer acted or juggled (7)
REDCOAT: An anagram (juggled) of ACTED and OR

25a    I had to break up row, becoming more orderly (6)
TIDIER: I’D (I had) to separate (break up) TIER (row)

26a    Tailored 24 Across, some style (3,4)
ART DECO: An anagram (tailored) of the answer REDCOAT as in 24 Across

27a    Tory privilege and one able to soar? (5-6)
RIGHT-WINGER: A charade of RIGHT (privilege) and a flier or WINGER (one able to soar)


2d    In tree house, are becoming most familiar? (7)
NEAREST: Inside (in) NEST (tree house), ARE from the clue is placed.

3d    Ruined, seeing miserable rounding error (9)
COLLAPSED: COLD (miserable) surrounding or going round (rounding) LAPSE (error)

4d    Stretcher orderly craftily has nicked (5)
LYCRA: The words orderLY CRAftily has hidden inside (nicked) the definition

5d    Worshipped, from above and below? (7)
DEIFIED: The definition appearing as a palindrome in a downward clue (from above and below)

6d    Audible greeting for spectator (7)
WATCHER: Homophone heard by the listeners (audible) as WOTCHER (greeting)

7d    Pudding observed with eye (7,4)
SPOTTED DICK: A charade of SPOTTED (observed) and (with) DICK (private eye)

8d    Female, a little lower? (6)
HEIFER: A cryptic definition of a female, immature, (a little) not yet a cow or one that lows (lower)

11d    Evidence of excess in big business? (11)
CORPORATION: Definition is also known by the term PAUNCH or POTBELLY or FAT STOMACH (evidence of excess)

16d    Please access article in container (9)
ENTERTAIN: ENTER (access), followed by A (article) inserted in (in) TIN (container)

18d    Language welcome in law is incomprehensible (7)
SWAHILI: HI (welcome) inside (in) an anagram (incomprehensible) of LAW and IS from the clue

19d    Old knight, artist and old actress (7)
RALEIGH: A charade of RA (artist) and Vivien LEIGH (old actress)

20d    Rowdy girl and the rest holding Edward up (7)
LADETTE: The Latin term ET AL (and the rest) containing (holding) TED (Edward), both in a reversal order in a downward clue (up)

21d    Bottling crude oil, check for colour (6)
VIOLET: VET (check) taking inside (bottling) an anagram (crude) of OIL from the clue

23d    Mammal, foxy dropping tail (5)
SHREW: SHREW[D] (foxy) minus the last letter D (dropping tail)

Thanks to Dada for the entertainment and to BD for the encouragement. Hope to be here again. Have a wonderful day.


2 comments on “ST 3103

  1. Thanks, Rahmat, especially for explaining 11d, which I’d bunged in just from the definition.

    For 18d, at the point I had 3 of the 4 crossing letters I managed to make ‘Spanish’ fit — which obviously matches the definition, but not the wordplay.

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