Toughie No 2919 by proXimal
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ***
Many thanks to proXimal for today’s workout.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle.
7a Vulgar female dismissed by Nemo, perhaps (8)
CLOWNISH: start with the type of creature that Nemo is in the animated Disney film (Clownfish) and remove the abbreviation for female.
9a Walk past bar when on time (6)
PROMPT: stick together a short word for a walk and ‘past’ without the synonym of when.
10a Sign letter in Greek and French on back (6)
TAURUS: a Greek letter and the reversal of the French word for ‘on’.
11a Doctor fastening clamping centre of worn raised track (8)
MONORAIL: one of our abbreviations for doctor followed by something used to fasten containing the central letters of ‘worn’.
12a Enjoying being around eastern venture setting up again (2-12)
RE-ESTABLISHING: a synonym for enjoying or appreciating contains the abbreviation for eastern and an informal word for a venture or attempt.
15a Accommodation error picked up (4)
GAFF: this sounds like an embarrassing error.
17a Name of hat covering teacher’s head (5)
TITLE: a dated informal word for a hat contains the first letter of teacher.
19a Rabbit and ass (4)
GOON: split our answer 2,2 to get a phrasal verb meaning to rabbit.
20a European country caught men so suspiciously accepting China’s bribe (6,4,4)
GREASE ONE’S PALM: start with a homophone of a European country and add an anagram (suspiciously) of MEN SO containing what a china is in rhyming slang.
23a Unpleasantly wet spades I’m not sure should be put in hall (8)
SLOBBERY: the abbreviation for the card suit spades and an entrance hall into which an exclamation indicating “I’m not sure” is inserted.
25a On time, vessel proceeds (6)
RETURN: glue together a preposition meaning on, the abbreviation for time and a vase-like vessel.
27a Spirit consumed by tipsy chef (6)
PSYCHE: hidden in the clue.
28a Recently acquired unowned stray eating fine (3-5)
NEW-FOUND: an anagram (stray) of UNOWNED containing the pencil abbreviation for fine.
1d Excuse bound to have lifted pressure (4)
PLEA: a bound or jump with the physics abbreviation for pressure lifted to the top.
2d Blades surfaced at both sides with oars coming up (6)
SWORDS: assemble the outer letters of ‘surfaced’ and a verb meaning oars and reverse the lot.
3d Call for attention having advanced on border (4)
AHEM: the abbreviation for advanced and a border.
4d Prickly parts of small plants (6)
SPINES: the abbreviation for small and types of trees or shrubs.
5d Collecting / large screen (8)
HOARDING: double definition, the second a large screen for displaying advertisements as may be seen in Piccadilly Circus.
6d Issue register for food parcel (6,4)
SPRING ROLL: a verb to issue or arise and a register or list of names.
8d Mo in second, yet at end clutching bronze (7)
INSTANT: knit together IN, the abbreviation for second and the end letter of ‘yet’ containing a verb or noun meaning bronze.
13d Preacher for one section of church turned up on schedule (10)
EVANGELIST: join together the abbreviation meaning ‘for one’ and the central section of a church. Now reverse that and append a schedule or catalogue.
14d Hammered losing first game (5)
LOTTO: an informal word for hammered or drunk without its first letter.
16d Response from pass to defender (8)
FEEDBACK: split the answer 4,4 to get a phrase meaning ‘pass the ball to a defensive player’.
18d Central spot mostly dark-coloured part of pan (7)
EYEBROW: put together a word for the central spot (of a storm, say) and an adjective meaning dark-coloured without its last letter. Pan here is a slang word for the face.
21d Shake a leg alarmed after forgetting Aga cooking foreign bread (6)
SHEKEL: remove the jumbled (cooking) letters of AGA from SHAKE A LEG and make an anagram (alarmed) of what remains.
22d Approaches to mask over sadness (6)
PATHOS: a word meaning approaches or routes conceals within it the cricket abbreviation for over.
24d Pull sturdy animal bearing north (4)
YANK: a sturdy type of ox contains the abbreviation for north.
26d Spoke of work and golf (4)
RUNG: a verb meaning to run or function and the letter that golf represents in the Nato Phonetic Alphabet.
Top clues for me were 23a, 25a and 6d. Which one(s) pleased you?