Toughie No 2977 by Chalicea
Hints and Tips by StephenL
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty * – Enjoyment **/***
Hello everyone from a gloriously sunny and mild South Devon coast. As it’s my last blog before the “big day” I’d like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and festive period.
Chalicea occupies the Tuesday spot this week and a more gentle intro to the Toughie week one couldn’t wish for.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought
9a In Rockall a mainly cud-chewing beast (5)
LLAMA: Hidden in the clue as indicated by the first word of the clue.
10a Bake grouse for Sunday dinner maybe (5,4)
ROAST BEEF: Follow a method of cooking with a synonym of grouse in the sense of grievance.
11a Let bank, by arrangement, cover (7)
BLANKET: Anagram (by arrangement) of the preceding two words
12a Thoroughly examine page in former traditional learning (7)
EXPLORE: The abbreviation for Page sits between the usual two letter synonym of former and some traditional learning or that passed down.
13a Bashful cat half consumed large rodent (5)
COYPU: A synonym of bashful or shy is followed by the first half of a cat that’s given its name to a well known sports brand…..or more likely an informal name for a cat you’ll see on Thursday back-page blogs.
14a Most of book is ultimately irrelevant for backup soldier (9)
RESERVIST: A synonym of book as a verb loses its last letter, IS from the clue and the final letter of irrelevanT.
16a Running amok two lasses in wood indulge in dissipation (3,4,4,4)
SOW ONES WILD OATS: Anagram (running amok) of the following four words
19a Formal meeting to lay to rest opinion (9)
INTERVIEW: A synonym of lay to rest in the sense of bury followed by an opinion or stance.
21a Shout of support about beginnings of very unusual reproductive structure (5)
OVULE: A Spanish exclamation of support goes around the initial letters of Very Unusual.
23a Arctic creature smuggled back west cheaply that’s oddly overlooked (7)
NARWHAL: A synonym of smuggled is reversed (back) and is followed by the abbreviation for West and the alternate letters of cHeApLy.
25a Part of organ heard but not initially odd (7)
EARDRUM; Remove the first letter of hEARD that the setter has very kindly gifted us and add a quaint synonym of odd or unusual.
27a Coasting sadly round lake longing for good old days (9)
NOSTALGIC: An anagram (sadly) of COASTING sits around the abbreviation for Lake.
28a Pea showing sign of life? (5)
PULSE: An edible seed of which a pea is an example is also a rhythmic throb that indicates one has a heartbeat.
1d Score of zero, bowled with ball in high, slow arc (4)
BLOB: The abbreviation for Bowled and and the type of ball described perfectly in the clue.
2d Unfortunately, upset railway workers strike over this (6)
SALARY: Reverse a synonym of unfortunately and add the usual 2-letter abbreviation for RailwaY or lines. A very smooth and topical clue and an &lit to boot.
3d Warm place to keep pot simmering, not requiring immediate attention (4,6)
BACK BURNER: This warm place can metaphorically mean to put something aside, postpone or give it low priority.
4d Depression of standard in credit (6)
CRATER: A synonym of standard in the sense of degree or grade sits inside the abbreviation for CrateR
5d Stir wake when travelling (5,3)
WATER SKI: Anagram (when travelling) of STIR WAKE giving a rather clever all in one where the whole clue is acting as definition and wordplay
6d A child’s toy in highest place (4)
ATOP: A from the clue and a child’s toy (not an iPad!)
7d Matador’s cape movement I watched essentially in Italian city (8)
VERONICA: I got this from wordplay and checkers. Insert I from the clue and the essential letter of watChed into an Italian city. Every day is a school day.
8d Behind given smack, producing sensation felt later (10)
AFTERTASTE: Synonyms of behind or following and smack in the sense of “this has a smack of unfairness” say.
13d Trying to protect kinky chignon I got cut by American (10)
CUSHIONING: Anagram (kinky) of CHIGNON and I into which is inserted one of the abbreviations for American.
15d Informative film for those working in a theatre? (10)
RADIOGRAPH. A cryptic definition, the theatre workers being in a hospital.
17d Insipid whiskey a primarily thirsty European regularly drains hot (8)
WATERISH: A bit (well a lot) of a Lego clue. The abbreviation for Whisky, A from the clue, the initial letter of Thirsty, the abbreviation for European and alternate letters (regularly) of dRaInS and the abbreviation for Hot.
18d With son in the lead plunders what is allowed to flow over (8)
SPILLAGE: A synonym of plunders or robs with the abbreviation for Son moved to the front (in the lead)
20d Young lass, it’s facetiously said, clutches right adjustable tool (6)
WRENCH: A derogatory and little heard these days name for a young woman is placed around (clutches) the abbreviation for Right.
22d A French game with half of Lyon following is turbulent (6)
UNRULY: Start with a French indefinite article, add the initials of a sport and the first half of LYon
24d Restore to good condition slope, we’re told (4)
HEAL: A homophone (we’re told) of a synonym of slope or list.
26d Bearing of one among members of workforce (4)
MIEN: Insert the letter that looks like the Roman numeral one into a synonym of workforce or staff
Thanks Chalicea, my winners are 2,5 and 15d. Which ones appealed to you?