Sunday Toughie 32 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Sunday Toughie 32 (Hints)

Sunday Toughie No 32 by Zandio

Hints and Tips by Sloop John Bee

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My quickest ever Sunday Toughie last night, but still a couple of parsings that followed on a later bus. Although I got to bed early last night a little bit too much Laphroaig, printer issues and Mama Bee’s requirements have put me behind a little.

We have an evenly balanced 28 clues today and I have hints for seven across and seven down clues. I have not hinted the lurkers but they are all down clues and reversed and the shortest is reversed and alternate letters.

Here we go…


As it is a Prize puzzle I can only hint at a few and hope that will give you the checkers and inspiration to go further. I’ll be back just after the closing date with the full blog. Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in RED at the bottom of the hints!

I hope I don’t have to redact any comments but I am new at this and don’t want to rock the boat. If in doubt, I’ll rub it out! – I think that sentence is a bit redundant. You have all been so helpful in sorting out prior parsing failures, and I am sure I will need similar help again. Don’t go too far though as the Acting Moderators have been exercising the RED pencil on the Saturday Hints.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also” Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions. Some hints follow: Remember the site rules and play nicely.



1a Judge sees dope and ecstasy used by two sons (6)
A dope that resembles a grey long-eared member of the genus Equus, and two of the letters that sons suggest around a common name for the drug known as ecstasy.

15a Cool until one fan breaks into song (2-2-3-6)
This one caused the most problems parsing. Start with a two-word phrase suggested by until, add a signature tune or repeated melody, and insert the letter that looks like one and a crazily obsessed fan.

18a Two-and-six in old money? (6,2,5)
Two-and-six in old money? If this was a general knowledge puzzle I would have bunged in Half a Crown and moved on, but this is a cryptic puzzle and it doesn’t fit. You need a synonym of coins and the number of Half-Crowns in a pound. And as Gazza says below two and six are parts of the whole sum.
Silver Piece Of Eight | From The Armoury
20a Poles touring Texas site overlooking centre for swimmers (6)
The site of a famous Texas battle overlooks its central letter and goes into both poles.

24a Eventually we’ll all come to these streets (4,4)
Eventually, we’ll all come to shuffle off this mortal coil. These streets also have nowhere to go.

When you could have lunch boxes cold with no delay (2,4)
A time you could have lunch contains the letter that cold suggests.

27a Recalls missing Stipe’s band — they’re burnt out (6)
A synonym of recalls omits the band that Michael Stipe was part of to be the burnt-out remains of a recently extinguished fire.


1d Whip up a distribution of euros (6)
A from the clue and an anagram of euros whips up a sexual frenzy perhaps.

3d Impulsive Harry Kane at penalty time? (4-2-3-6)
Something impulsive from a singular version of the team that Harry Kane plays for, I assume that he is their designated penalty taker too.

Harry Kane's last-gasp penalty denies Liverpool victory after Mohamed Salah double in dramatic Anfield draw | The Independent | The Independent
A surgeon depends on this connecting tool (9,6)

A surgeon’s plan for how a surgical procedure happens is also the means we use to connect our various electronic devices.

8d Compromise, in a word or two (8)
A synonym of compromise that the BRB confirms is to expose to risk of injury can also be split (3,5) to be a way of achieving said compromise.
DAY 249: Biting My Tongue - Marshmallow Ranch
16d Perfect tango, maybe, apart from opening statement (9)
An adjective for perfect or Out-and-out and the art form of which Tango is an example without its opening letter.

19d Shows article’s disregarded parties (6)
A synonym of shows disregards the indefinite article to be some merrymaking parties.

23d Wilfred Owen’s words, perhaps: ‘Soldiers, every second counts’ (4)
Every second counts tell us to take alternate letters of the preceding word to give us what Wilfred Owen was known for. In his most famous work, he quoted Horace’s  *** III 2.13.

My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori


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9 comments on “Sunday Toughie 32 (Hints)
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  1. I thought that this was the most straightforward of the Sunday Toughies we’ve had to date but enjoyable. Thanks to Zandio and SJB.
    24a doesn’t do a lot to lighten the mood.
    I took the 18a answer to be what two and six are arithmetically.
    My ticks went to 9a, 13a, 2d and 8d.

  2. The best I have done on a Sunday Toughie, I think–certainly the fastest I’ve finished one, though I did of course have to Google Harry Kane to justify my answer, and I needed help parsing 15a. Still, an unaided finish, with 8d and 2d drawing topmost honours, followed by 9a and 11d. Thanks to SJB and to Zandio. Most enjoyable.

  3. Didn’t take as long as I would normally expect for a Sunday special from this setter. Top three for me were 9&18a plus 8d.

    Thanks to Zandio and to SJB for the hints.

  4. I don’t normally stray onto the puzzles website but I’m glad I found this very pleasant and diverting Toughie. Several of the long answers went in straight away which certainly helped the process.

    Many thanks to Zandio and SJB.

  5. Having read Robert’s difficulty rating of this one (& John’s confirmation of it) on his back page Dada review I thought the tired eyelids could cope. Unusually straightforward for a Zandio puzzle (easier than a fair few of his Friday back-pagers I’d reckon) & just the ticket for a pre early lights out solve. Very enjoyable indeed. 18a my clear favourite with ticks for 9,15,20,24&27a plus 3,8&14d.
    Thanks to Zandio & SJB

  6. Just catching up on Sunday Toughies after a cycling holiday in Sardinia – which also turned out to be a real Toughie!

    Zandio has made my ‘catching up’ task a bit more straightforward with a gentler puzzle than usual. Favourite clues were 12a, 8d and 23d. There were a couple of unusual bits of wordplay going on which I may perhaps have mis-parsed? I’ll see what SJB reckons when I read the full review. Thanks to Zandio and SJB.

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