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DT 30270

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30270

Hints and tips by Falcon

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Happy Easter to one and all. As Senf alluded yesterday, the storm that dumped large amounts of snow on Winnipeg early in the week arrived in eastern Canada mid-week. However, by the time it arrived it had changed from a snowstorm to an ice storm and encased everything in a thick, heavy coating of ice causing the branches of many trees to break under the weight resulting in damage to cars, homes and other structures, lengthy power outages for millions of customers, and tragically a few deaths. I was truly fortunate in not losing power and suffered only the loss of several large limbs from my backyard maple tree.

Today, I would say Campbell has given us a gentler workout than most of those he has delivered recently.

In the hints below, underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions, and indicators are italicized. The answers will be revealed by clicking on the ANSWER buttons.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought of the puzzle.


1a   Starts to record old movies — Carry on Matron and Notting Hill, say (6)
ROMCOM — string together the initial letters of (starts to) the next six words in the clue

4a   Cad couple clock? (3-5)
TWO-TIMER — synonyms for couple as a noun and clock as an instrument for measuring duration

9a   Uncontrolled, managed to get on motorway (6)
RANDOM — a charade of another word for managed or directed, a verb (usually encountered as a present participle) meaning ‘get on’ or manage (in another sense) and the abbreviation for motorway

10a   Man-made object in back street cafe, traditional (8)
ARTEFACT — a lurker hidden (in) and reversed (back) in three words of the clue

11a   Bizarre what injured player did? (4-5)
LEFT-FIELD — enumerated (4,5), the answer describes what an injured player would likely have done

13a   Famous boxer, British, I excuse (5)
ALIBI — link together the boxer who floated like a butterfly, the single letter for British, and the I from the clue

14a   Restaurant may add one allegation after function (7,6)
SERVICE CHARGE — an allegation or accusation following a function or act

17a   Very close races — if so, phone this criminal (5,8)
PHOTO FINISHES — an anagram (criminal) of the preceding four words

21a   I’m driven through illuminated border (5)
LIMIT — IM (I’m) inserted into (driven through) another term for illuminated

23a   Smart dame working in capital city (9)
AMSTERDAM — an angram (working) of the first two words of clue

24a   Insectivore in African country mostly found inhabiting short coniferous tree (8)
PANGOLIN — a truncated (mostly) African country inside a truncated (short) coniferous tree

25a   Indicates fielding position close to slips (6)
POINTSdouble definition, the second being a fielding position in cricket a 5-letter fielding position in cricket (which coincidentally is located not far from the slips) and the final letter of (close to) SLIPS; thank you, Gazza, for bringing this oversight to my attention

26a   Former deputy making rigorous demands (8)
EXACTING — the usual former love interest and an adjective denoting deputy or temporarily performing a duty

27a   At home nurse may be mean (6)
INTEND — the usual ‘at home’ and nurse as a verb


1d   Bank has to support artist once in a while (6)
RARELY — a verb meaning to bank or depend following (supporting in a down clue) an abbreviated member of a prestigious arts society

2d   Reveal nothing in policy statement (9)
MANIFESTO — reveal or display and a letter that looks like a numerical representation of nothing

3d   Available for one disturbed about fine (2,5)
ON OFFER — an anagram (disturbed) of the preceding two words enveloping the pencil symbol for fine

5d   Play-off row after promise broken by fourth in table (5,6)
WORLD SERIES — a row or progression following a promise containing a specified letter found in the final word in the clue

6d   What she lost in broad British estuary (3,4)
THE WASH — an anagram (lost) of the first two words in the clue

7d   I end up getting married in large US resort (5)
MIAMI — reverse (up in a down clue) the I from the clue and an end or goal with the genealogical abbreviation for married inserted (getting … in)

8d   Servant kept rook in daughter’s place (8)
RETAINER — a synonym for kept with the genealogical abbreviation for daughter replaced by the chess notation for rook

12d   Joy describing one male in for murder (11)
ELIMINATION — another word for great joy encapsulating all of a Roman one, the single letter for male, and the IN from the clue

15d   Home team in Conference losing first half (9)
RESIDENCE — a synonym for team contained in (in) the second half of CONFERENCE

16d   There’s peel and a pip, unfortunately, in this dessert (5-3)
APPLE-PIE — an anagram (unfortunately) of PEEL and A PIP; Were the definition to be an adjective, the anwer would contain the indicated hyphen. However, to me, the definition appears to point to a noun which has no hyphen

18d   Rejected job in remote settlement (7)
OUTPOST — rejected or dismissed and job or position

19d   Dance with husband, awfully wooden (7)
HOEDOWN — the genealogical abbreviation for husband and an anagram (awfully) of wooden leads to a boisterous North American country dance

20d   Entertained a married American editor (6)
AMUSED — concatenate the A from the clue, the genealogical abbreviation for married, the two-letter short form for American, and the usual shortened editor

22d   Over in part of Spain, a modern craze (5)
MANIA — hidden (in part of) and reversed (over) in three words of the clue

I’m afraid no clue really stood out for me today. Did you have a favourite?

Quickie Pun (Top Row): PAY + PERCH + ACE = PAPER CHASE

Quickie Pun (Middle Row): WEAK + DAZE = WEEKDAYS

Quickie Pun (Bottom Row) : TOW + TALLY + TEA = TOTALITY

107 comments on “DT 30270

  1. Pleasant enough puzzle today and a welcome diversion from the grim weather here in Sandhurst. No real favourites today for me but did wonder at the answer to 4a, doesn’t really seem to be an accurate description to me. Oh well, back to watching the rain…..

  2. Very enjoyable. There was some pretty basic stuff in there but I really liked the reverse lurker at 10a and thought 7d was very smartly constructed as were 5,6&12d. Good Monday fare.
    Many thanks to Campbell and Falcon

  3. Another great puzzle from Campbell, which I managed unaided. Such a change from last week’s offering. Putting “faced” as the second word in 4a held me up for a while but I realised when I could not think of an American resort starting with “C” and ending in “I”. My COTD is 24a.

    Many thanks to Campbell for the fun – I liked both Quickie puns (missed the third). Thank you, Falcon for the hints, which I will now read.

    I Wordled in two again today – it can’t last.

          1. I didn’t get it probably mainly ‘cos I didn’t have a ‘u’ in my starter word – should have stuck to my usual adieu. I guess you, Merusa, are probably more likely to have heard the word which I see originated in the US Marine Corps.

            1. For those of our refined group who were offended by SNAFU, my BRB gives the polite alternative as “fouled up”!!
              Really enjoyed today’s puzzle, LOI was 1a. Thanks to all.

  4. Raining still, so a little more time consuming puzzle would have suited me better! No favourites but also no objections.

  5. An enjoyable solve from Campbell, but over far too quickly. I liked the clever anagrams at 17a and 15d, and the well hidden lurker at 10a. I could name any of the others as favourite but I’ll go for 24a as it caused the most head scratching. Thanks to Campbell for the usual Monday enjoyment and Falcon, whose help wasn’t needed but surely would have been had he not been there (if that makes sense!)

  6. A pleasa t puzzle with a couple of nuce geographical clues at 23a andv14a but COTD was the revwrse kurker at 10a. Thabks to Falcon forvthe hints and sorry to hear of the damage to your maple tree. We have a lot of damage from last year’s hot dry summer followed by a cold, frosty winter and a cold, wet spring. Thanks too to Campbell for a fine Bank Holiday puzzle.

  7. With the exception of 10&24a this pretty well flew straight in so those two will have to be my top two as they extended the solve to just over 1.5* time. Pleasant enough without perhaps being out of his top drawer though as ever nicely clued throughout.
    Thanks to Campbell & Falcon

  8. A very gentle introduction to the week’s puzzles – thanks to Campbell and Falcon.
    In 25a I think the closing letter of slips is needed at the end of the answer.

    If you want something a bit tougher there’s an excellent puzzle by Sirdakka in Rookie Corner.

    1. Yes, Gazza, you are correct. I did notice that the cricket position was referred to as point on several fielding charts I consulted. I had even added a comment to this effect in the hint but deleted it before publishing the review thinking perhaps the point, cover point, deep cover point, and silly point might collectively be known as points.

      Now that the clue has been determined not to be a double definition, I suppose the illustration is no longer appropriate, but I’ll let it stand as a monument to my futile attempts to understand this British sport.

      1. Don’t worry. Who on this side of the Pond understands rounders, sorry baseball? 😂

        1. Rounders! That’s a blast from the past. I loved the game as a kid and have often thought since how much it resembles Baseball.
          (Actually, I believe Baseball is Rounders but please don’t tell our friends across The Pond – they can be very touchy!) 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

          1. Oh yes, rounders and netball. We used to play rounders in what we called “the rustics” at school, an area with trees but enough spaces to make bases and space to run.

  9. It’s Monday :good: It’s Campbell :good: **/****

    And, thank goodness that Campbell’s three puns are a lot easier to resolve than Dada’s one!

    Candidates for favourite – 4a, 12d, and 15d – and the winner is 4a.

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  10. A cheery and gentle puzzle (no additional toast required) from the Monday Maestro, for which a certain amount of sporting knowledge is handy.

    We were up so late last night watching the last round of The Masters from Augusta, as Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm undertook the slowest round of golf* in the entire history of the game. Mr Rahm won the event and deserved to do so. He seems a thoroughly decent chap. We moan about the number of commercials on British TV but its only when one watches a live event from the US that one is reminded that their television set up is to provide a programme of advertisements, with some sporting action tucked in amongst all those commercials.


    Thanks to Campbell and The Bird Of Prey.

    1. I have to give it a minimum 45 min head start so that I can fast forward through the ads. It’s the one thing that the LIV coverage has going for it but who wants to watch that product

  11. Not quite Canadian ice storms or Augusta pine felling winds here in Putney, but a dull grey sky and monotonous rain to accompany Monday’s crossword. A relatively gentle stroll through the grid today – particularly liked 1a and 13a but COTD for me was 14a. Not sure what a typical 14a is these days – it seems to land anywhere between 10% and 25% – I guess the higher percentages are due to inflation!

  12. I found this one rather difficult and could not finish it. Last week I fared far better. Sometimes I find the “helpful” hints made by the blogger to be of no more help than the clue itself. Unfortunately today’s blogger was a prime example of that.

    Let’s see what tomorrow brings.

    1. Welcome to the blog, Mike.
      I thought that Falcon’s hints were a model of clarity. Can you give an example on one that you couldn’t understand?

      1. I totally agree with Gazza about Falcon’s hints.
        Actually I think all of our bloggers do an excellent job.

  13. Haven’t commented in a while, but wanted to pop in and say thank you to whoever recommended Demon Copperhead, what a great book.
    As to the puzzle, it was pleasant enough and I’m embarrassed to admit that the reverse lurker in 10a held me up for far longer than it should have, so that takes my COTD.
    Shouldn’t 5d be indicated as an Americanism?
    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon

    1. GJR, 5d. The answer doesn’t necessarily relate to baseball in North America; the phrase can be the title of any contest/event that is the most important/prestigious of its kind. Also, unindicated Americanisms are often used by setters/allowed by the Editor in DT cryptics.

      1. Thanks Jose, I’ve never come across in any other context than baseball, so I live and learn

      2. Hi J

        I’m reasonably up to speed with the world of sport but have never heard of a 5d in another sport that is a play-off. There are various 5d out there but they tend to be the whole competition not solely the play-off.

        Can you or someone else enlighten me?

        A very pleasant start to the week with, ironically, 5d getting the silverware as the second part took me a while to get.


        1. As far as I know, 5d play-offs specifically refer to baseball. The BRB and Collins online both agree.

          1. It took me a while to twig to the answer as I don’t associate the word play-off with the World Series per se. However, the definition for play-off found in Collins describes the World Series to a T, i.e. “a contest or series of games to determine a championship, as between the winners of two competitions”. I wonder if there may not be a slight difference in usage between Britain and North America.

            In Major League Baseball, the playoffs (no hyphen) consist of the National League Championship Series and the American League Championship Series, the respective winners of which meet in the World Series to determine the overall champion. So the World Series is the final round of the playoffs.

            1. That’s the one. No other play-offs are known as 5d.

              It’s an American sports event not an Americanism very much like the Tour de France is a French racing event. If ‘Tour de France’ was an answer, the clue wouldn’t need a nod to our Gallic chums: famous bike race would suffice.

              It’s a perfect clue from Campbell.

        2. That is true your Honour but, in my defence, I would like to point out an important nicety in my original statement. I did profess that the answer doesn’t necessarily relate to baseball in North America, NOT the answer/definition. I therefore rest my case …

          1. GJR suggested that an Americanism may be required which it isn’t.

            They’re not questioning that the answer can be linked to another sport. That is something that you’ve brought up.

            In this clue, the answer does solely relate to baseball. No other play-off is called a 5d.

            1. Only the Americans could call a game where only american teams compete a ‘world’ series but that is another discussion entirely!

            2. Yes Tom, I agreed with you at 7.17 and I don’t dispute you now but I think my original comment was misunderstood (probably my fault). I assumed that GJR was suggesting that an Americanism indicator was required (which it isn’t) for the answer phrase (only) because it is exclusively used in association with NA baseball play-offs – which, of course, it isn’t.

              1. I took his comment to mean that, as the answer refers to an American sport, it needs an indicator.

                I don’t think he was referring to the exclusive bit.

                His post at 1:56 is in response to your comment about it not being exclusive not his original point. The answer to this clue is exclusive, i.e no other sport’s play-offs are called this.

                Oh, who knows!

                The main thing is that Campbell’s clue works a charm.

                I need a drink.

                Strike that.

                Another one…..

                1. I’ll grant you the last say on this one, Tom – but only because I’m now watching Motorway Cops on Channel 5! Don’t get drunk … :-)

    2. GJR

      there seem to be two books with that title. Are you referring to the one by Barbara Kingsolver?


  14. 24A was a new word for me and my last one in, but clearly clued and just needed a quick google to check. I did wonder why 16D was hyphenated. 14A is my favorite. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  15. A very enjoyable puzzle today..maybe I am finally getting on Campbell’s wavelength.
    I did need Falcon’s help parsing 7d which had to be what it was and got the answer but missed the lurker at 10a. Dopey!

    I put it down to a late night last night watching Scotland’s men win the Curling World Championships in Ottawa , beating Canada…sorry Falcon…..

    Thanks to Campbell and to Falcon.

  16. Finally completed, for some reason it was the lurker at 10a that went in last. I found this much more accessible than last Monday but still a few tricky ones. 24a was my favourite as I had to think about a few animals before the penny dropped.

    Decidedly unpleasant soggy walk to collect the paper today but the spring flowers are looking lovely.

    Many thanks to Falcon for the hints which were clear and clarified how I reached my answers and Campbell for the entertainment

  17. For the most part straightforward enough, with a few penny drop moments at the end.


    Fav 23a LOI 5d.

    Thanks to setter and Falcon.

  18. Satisfyingly Mondayish
    Thought a Bank Holiday might be different.
    A certain evenness of difficulty throughout.
    Apart from a cleverly concealed lurker.
    So, */4.
    Favourites were 14 and 25a.
    Many thanks, Campbell and Falcon.

  19. A gentle start to Bank Holiday Monday, compensates a little for the return to miserable weather.
    Biggest smiles here went to 11a,6d & the top Quickie pun and my heart bleeds for those poor 24a’s.

    Thanks to Campbell and to Falcon – thank goodness

    1. I agree re 24a, they’re being hunted to near extinction for some dubious medicinal purpose. I’m such a bleeding heart for all wild critters, don’t get me started on elephants!

  20. 1*/3.5* for a light and fun start to the week, which brightened an otherwise gloomy day.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to Falcon.

  21. I thought our weather was miserable enough here in Shropshire today, but it’s nothing compared to what you have described and have had to endure, Falcon. Hopefully things will soon warm up a bit in Canada. Today’s Campbell offering was perfect for the morning – whilst waiting for a window in the wet to set a couple of passion flower plants. The puzzle was certainly more friendly than the weather and possibly less difficult than some Monday offerings too. All flowed fairly well until I hit the SW corner, but once I’d convinced myself that I had indeed got the correct word in 12d, then entered the critter at 24a, all fell smoothly into place, with my final entry being the well hidden lurker at 22d. My top marks go to 24a, 5d & 22d. I dislike words like that at 1a equally as much as I do acronyms when in crossword puzzles, but that’s just me. Otherwise an entertaining Monday puzzle. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon. Oh good, now the sun’s shining again from an almost clear blue sky. Planting beckons.

      1. Strewth! And its nearly mid April. Thank goodness we only have the vagaries of an island climate to contend with. :-) :-)

  22. Good fun whilst it lasted. 5d is a term that always makes me smile.

    Thanks to Falcon and Campbell.

  23. Gentle and fun, perfect after a busy Bank Holiday weekend. I especially liked the sporting theme of a number of clues, though less enamoured by the clunky 4a! Like Terrance @10 I’m suffering a bit after staying up to watch the Masters, though it was well worth it! I always enjoy watching a new winner and how he will handle the pressure on the final back nine.

    Pick of the bunch for me was 11a which had a great surface, 17a as a well hidden anagram and 23a for the amusing surface gets COTD. */****

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon

  24. Thankfully not to tricky today as I tested positive again this morning. Hardly any symptoms now except extreme exhaustion. Am about to go back to bed and I see Escape to the Country features The Marches so will watch and see if I can spot Steve and his menagerie! Thanks to all

    1. Extreme exhaustion isn’t a symptom? It sounds a most unpleasant one. Hope you feel better soon

    2. When Mrs C and I got Covid, Manders, we were still testing positive after two weeks. I rang our local GP and was told that, no matter what the test result was, so long as we had isolated for 10 days we were free to rejoin society.

      Apparently, the test are very good at detecting the virus but not that good at detecting it has gone.

      I wish you well and hope you get better soon. 😷

  25. A very enjoyable start to the crosswording week. I particularly liked the well concealed 10a and 23a where the relevance of the anagram brought a smile to my face.
    If I may make a bid for the “Pedant of the Day Award” is the circled fielder in the hint for 25a the correct one? In my day (which was admittedly a long time ago) we would, I think, have called him silly mid-off – as in silly/stupid to field there. I don’t think the photo shows the required position. Is there a “flannelled fool” out there who can confirm this – I know some of our cricket loving bloggers will be worrying about it 😂
    Many thanks to Campbell and Falcon – your weather rather trumps my concerns about cricketing matters.

    1. This ex flannelled fool agrees with you. Point would be square of the wicket on the off side, usually a bit further out.

    2. Please refer to my mea culpa in reply to Gazza at Comment #8. The player circled in the illustration is (if sources can be believed) a silly point (as you will see if you mouse over the picture). Having initially misparsed the clue, I had presumed any of the point, cover point, deep cover point, and silly point might be informally referred to as a point.

        1. He’d undoubtedly be proud of you but the batsman is left handed….
          Sorry if that sounds too patronising 😩

        2. You likely know much more than I. However, if I read the fielding charts correctly, as there is a left-handed batsman in, the circled player is on the off side and I might say he is possibly positioned between silly point and silly mid-off.

            1. It’s all a bit subjective really. The fielding positions are, in my opinion, general areas of the pitch which inevitably overlap and are probably interpreted slightly differently by different people. I agree with YS. I think point is further out, sqare of the wicket – a bit like square leg on the offside….😩 Why did I start this? Just don’t ask me where short extra cover is 😂

              1. Aha! Silly me, didn’t notice he was a left hander! Silly mid off then. I’ll keep my lips zipped in future

                1. Please don’t. Your contributions are always worth reading. Your father must have been a farsighted man who anticipated the sport obsessed male domination of crossword setters that you’d be subjected to 😎

                  1. Dad was a ‘played in’ member of the MCC and later awarded life membership. He started taking me to Lords when I was about 7 and I’ve loved cricket ever since. He used to practice bowling at one stump on our grass tennis court (to Mum’s annoyance) and I was the ball retriever. I developed the most amazing throw for a girl and could out-throw a lot of blokes – however, they had to throw first and weren’t allowed a second go. Worked every time as they didn’t try hard enough the first time!

  26. I loved this puzzle (thank you, Campbell) and smiled from start to finish whilst solving. LOI 10a, so clever, and a tiny dip in the BRB to nudge me along in the NE corner; plus a quick check of the parsing (thank you, Falcon) of 7d which I couldn’t quite untangle all led to a very happy completion.
    I’m forever grateful that my now grown-up son was a capable cricketer and played for the county; as dutiful mum I supported him at matches and learnt what is now so useful in solving cryptics 🏏
    Happy Easter Monday to one and all.

  27. I find Campbell crosswords weird with complicated clumsy clues.
    Not difficult if you ignore most of the clue.
    Thx for the hints

  28. A lovely gentle start to the crosswording week with 24a my favourite clue. Thanks to both Campbell and Falcon.

  29. Well it’s Easter Monday and it’s also a Campbell day and this was a relatively gentle one, I thought.

    2*/4* for me today

    Favourites include 1a, 4a, 24a, 1d, 6d & 12d with winner 6d

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon

  30. Too Easy – can’t see how this can be rated as more than * difficulty . But thanks to both .

    1. I am so full of admiration for your superior intellect, well done! It must be a burden being so much more clever than mortal man, I should imagine finding entertainment must be a problem. Have you tried the Toughie yet? That might be more suitable for you.

    2. A point of grammar. Never start a sentence or phrase with a conjunction. 🤣🤣🤣

  31. I enjoyed this one. No convolutional cleverness which should be reserved for Toughies. A delight.

  32. With my limited IQ, this was just my speed! Natch, fave was 7d. I DNF as I couldn’t get 1a, though I think we’ve had it before and I should’ve remembered it.
    Thanks to Campbell for our Monday morning funeral, and to Falcon for his hints and tips, and explaining why my 25a was right.

    1. Of course I didn’t mean “funeral”, autocorrect is too embarrassing … I meant FUN!

  33. Really enjoyed this, thanks Campbell and Falcon.
    I apologise for intruding a question from 11a, so to speak, but I am baffled by Telegraph subscription and suspect mine has something strange. I pay 12.99 and get the paper and basic puzzles on an ipad. I have just activated an offer to add a second person (my wife) free of charge and she has got the Telegraph app “free for 3 months then 24.99 a month”. She has been using the Kindle Telegraph but it is being withdrawn. So one hand I am offered two people using the app for 12.99. or one person for 24.99. Has anyone else had this experience?

  34. 23a. How confusing that Amsterdam is the capital of The Netherlands but the seat of government is in The Hague.

    1. No more confusing than the fact that Blundell Park, the home of Grimsby Town FC, is in the adjacent town of Cleethorpes, JB.

  35. Just could not get 8d thank you Falcon for explaining and Campbell for such smooth clues

  36. Big thank you to Campbell for a very doable puzzle. Of course I was up the creek without a paddle for 25a, cricket being a complete mystery to me, and forgot the insectivore in 24a. Well to be honest, I thought I was looking for some sort of tree. The rest was a delight to solve.

  37. Good evening
    As today’s turn on the iron road comes to an end, so does the quest to finish today’s crozzie, with 7d coming in last.

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon

  38. At last a Monday puzzle on a Monday, hoorah! I thought the unindicated Americanism at 5d might elicit some comment but there is another dovetailing in at 11a, also baseball related, plus a possible at 19d, someone will no doubt put me right on that one. I decided the hyphen in 16d was a typo so didn’t put it in. I noticed a distinct American flavour if you count all the aforementioned plus 7d and possibly 1a? Enough of that. Favourite was 12d. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

    1. 19d does not relate to baseball but it is definitely North American. Collins characterizes the term as “US and Canadian”.

      As for Ia, it may be a British term (judging by the dictionaries in which it appears). In North America, we do use the term sitcom (situation comedy) for a slightly different genre of television.

      I’ll let Robert pass judgement.

      1. I meant only 11a for baseball. I don’t ever recall going to a 19d in my youth although I’ve seen American films where they do. I tend to regard all words like 1a as NA, I’m quite happy to be corrected. As American as 16d, I used to say as English as apples until I found out they were introduced by the Romans so both statements are incorrect.

  39. I fully support Mike and I have stopped posting comments due to the well established ‘old timers’ cruising through the crossword more or less on a daily basis and not quite understanding or remembering that some of us newcomers are still ‘getting to grips’ with the Crossword land of speech and explanations…. Today, I really don’t understand 11 across, as what is bizarre about ‘left field’? Pleas try and support us newcomers and/or young people who are trying their best!

    1. As some people have identified in previous comments, “out of left field” is American slang meaning “unexpected”, “odd” or “strange”. The phrase came from baseball terminology, referring to a play in which the ball is thrown from the area covered by the left fielder to either home plate or first base, surprising the runner. The throw from left field to first base is always longer than from any other position on the field. In the original Yankee Stadium in New York, the field was oval shaped with the long dimension extending into left field making the throw from left field to the plate longer than the throw from either centre field or right field.

  40. Sorry I’m so late today but still under the weather somewhat. After finally finding the solution to 10a, I finished quite happily, but it took me forever to find that little hidden gem of a lurker. Thanks to Falcon and Campbell. 2.5*/3*

  41. Campbell was easy on us today in this pleasant Monday puzzle, thank to him and Falcon

  42. I got the rook daughter thing in 8d but kept surely should end in D in which case it doesn’t parse

    1. Ignore that comment, I was thinking that the letter to swap was the first one which also would mean kept but it’s the last!

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