Toughie No 2961 by Hudson
Hints and tips by StephenL
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Hello everyone from a wet and windy (and sunny!) South Devon.
Hudson kicks off (note the topical football metaphor) the Toughie week with a fun puzzle full of his trademark wit and gentle misdirection. I filled in the grid relatively quickly but a couple of parsings needed extra thought.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1 Maybe Victoria welcomes flag waving in tough economic circumstances (11)
STAGFLATION: A portmanteau, these seem to be cropping up everywhere lately! Place an example of what Victoria could be (think transport) around an anagram (waving) of FLAG.
10 Ms Batty, being retired, put away soft pinny (5)
APRON: A reversal of a well known TV character around the musical abbreviation for soft. LOL
11 One running for office against Frank rejected information JFK provided (9)
CANDIDATE: A synonym of frank (ignore the false capitalisation) is followed by a reversal of some information JFK may provide once we realise that JFK is an airport.
12 Hector is shivering in the grip of cold turkey, drained, irritable(9)
CROTCHETY: Insert an anagram (shivering) of HECTOR into the abbreviation for Cold and the outer letters (drained) of TurkeY.
13 Turnback the clock and relax (5)
REMIT: A reversal of a generic name for a clock.
14 Reprimand Rover(dog)? (6)
CARPET: Something of which a Rover is/was an example and something of which a dog is an example.
16 Kate’s sweet William planted in west-facing ornamental lawn rockery? (8)
CORNWALL: Hidden and reversed (planted in west-facing). Of course William, being the eldest son of The Monarch is the Duke of…..
18 Item released from cloud storage that might make a bit of a splash(8)
RAINDROP: A mildly cryptic definition, the cloud being in the traditional sense and not in the IT sense that Hudson would like you to think.
20 Acquire gold carriage(6)
LANDAU: A synonym of acquire, as one may a good job say, and the chemical symbol of gold.
23 Blasé about leaving Beaujolais nouveau, which could raise the spirits (5)
OUIJA: Remove the letters (leaving) that spell out “blase” from BEAUJOLAIS and make an anagram (nouveau) of what remains. Note the setter has correctly given two anagram indicators here. The spirits are not related to mood.
24 High-ranking Venetian attending party beginning to get vicious (3-3-3)
DOG EAT DOG: If you split the solution 4,2,2 and then append the initial letter of Get you’ll see the wordplay. I had to check the 4-letter high-ranking official.
26 Country squire visiting harbour miles away (9)
ARGENTINA: Insert a synonym of squire into a port once the abbreviation for Miles has been removed from its front. Coincidentally topical as said country has just suffered an embarrassing loss in The World Cup.
27 Blooming ‘eck … ‘orrible ‘olding lizard!(5)
GECKO: Hidden with the indicator written in the same way as the fodder.
28 Savvy way passenger vehicles reversed (6,5)
STREET SMART: A synonym of way in the sense of a road plus the reversal of some passenger vehicles. I think this phrase is more commonly used with a different second word.
2 Body temperature(roughly)(5)
TORSO: The abbreviation for Temperature and a phrase (2,2) meaning roughly.
3 Feeding Reagan a cheesy, creamy mixture from France(7)
GANACHE: Hidden (feeding)
4 Valet unveiled shiner(6)
LACKEY: The shiner here is what one may have after a blow to the eye. Remove the outside letters (unveiled)
5 Alfred reporting live court action? (8)
TENNYSON: The surname of this (poetic) Alfred sounds like (reporting) some live court action, the court being in a sporting sense.
6 Greek character’s poetic appeal before president leaves America for Italy (7)
OMICRON: The fifteenth letter of the Greek alphabet which gained notoriety as a variant of Covid is obtained by a single letter exclamation used in poetry followed by our “good friend” the President of France with the abbreviation for America replaced by that of Italy.
7 Soldier: “clean bottled my piano exam”(5,8)
LANCE CORPORAL: Start with an anagram (bottled) of CLEAN, add an exclamation meaning “my”, the abbreviation for Piano and one of the staple exams.
8 Might one make hay holding some playing cards? (4,4)
FARMHAND: A synonym of holding in the sense of property or estate plus how one might describe some playing cards that one holds
9 Daughter, upper-class, introduced to New Orleans gent who fills in at work (6,7)
DENTAL SURGEON: Anagram (New) of ORLEANS GENT and the abbreviations for Daughter and Upper class. Clever anagrind
15 King feeling sick, stabbed at the front fencing (8)
RAILINGS: The Latin abbreviation for King, a synonym of sick and the initial letter (at the front) of Stabbed
17 Digger’s employer‘s mild brews left outside(8)
GOLDMINE: Insert an anagram (brews) of MILD into a synonym of left in the sense of departed
Beautiful song and video
19 Police search of garden wasted time(7)
DRAGNET: Anagram (wasted) of GARDEN plus the abbreviation for Time
21 Priest upset with revolting magazine material supplied by 9(7)
AMALGAM. A reversal (upset) of a monk plus a reversal (revolting) of an abbreviated MAGazine gives a material used in cavity fillings.
22 A good hour sat around, horrified (6)
AGHAST: A from the clue, the abbreviations for Good and Hour and an anagram (around) of SAT.
25 Regularly drench our home furnishings (5)
DECOR: The regular letters of DrEnCh OuR.
Good stuff. My winners are 11&23a plus 9d but smiles throughout the grid.