Toughie No 3105 by Robyn
Hints and tips by StephenL
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BD Rating – Difficulty **/*** – Enjoyment ***
Hello everyone from a sunny and pleasantly warm South Devon coast.
Robyn, a setter who rarely disappoints, kicks off proceedings this week with a typically tricky and witty puzzle. Apologies for lack of pictures but I’m still having a lot of trouble with my right eye.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1a Drug dealer quick to conceal wrongdoing (8)
PHARMACY: A synonym of quick (Stuart Broad perhaps?) around (to conceal) one of wrongdoing or malpractice. The dealer is not a criminal!
5a Sound of strike catching a six-footer, a pugilist (6)
BANTAM: Place a sudden loud noise around one of crosswordland’s favourite “six-footers”
9a Hating the novel of one odd writer about quiet house (9)
NEOPHOBIC: Start with an anagram (odd) of ONE and add a three-letter name of a pen. Insert the abbreviations for quiet and HOuse into the result.
11a Contact teacher’s ending with a head (5)
REACH: The final letter of teacheR plus a word that could mean “a/per head”.
12a Old widow‘s on line computer lessons (6)
RELICT: The usual two-letter preposition meaning on, the abbreviation for Line and the abbreviation for an Information Communication Technology course.The setter is using old to indicate that the definition is archaic.
13a Model worker not meeting deadlines (8)
TEMPLATE: An informal or abbreviated part-time worker and an adjective meaning behind time.
15a Fail to get breaks once in Cambridge University also (13)
MISUNDERSTAND: Place an archaic (once) or literary word for breaks or splits inside our usual abbreviated Cambridge (US) university and add a conjunction meaning also.
18a Hunting game, pass around live badgers (4,3,6)
HARE AND HOUNDS: Place a synonym of pass or distribute around the second person form of the verb “be” then add a synonym of badgers as a verb.
22a Dog turning right in grand residence (8)
BALMORAL: A reversal (turning) of an abbreviated dog plus a synonym of right or just.
23a Hip black plates the ultimate in book printing method (3-3)
INKJET: Start with a synonym of hip or popular, add a word that often precedes black to describe total darkness and insert between the two the final letter of booK.
26a Old guy, one horny bounder from Africa (5)
ORIBI: Put together the abbreviation for Old, a synonym of guy as a verb and the letter representing one.
27a Partridge cages keep out a big star? (9)
ALDEBARAN: The given name of cringeworthy “chat show host” Partridge around a synonym of keep out or block.
28a Flipping blue gag nearly holds interest (6)
ENGAGE: Hidden and reversed in the clue as indicated by the words flipping and holds.
29a Mike goes after kind of wood yielding resin (8)
BALSAMIC: The abbreviation for MICrophone follows a type of light wood.
1d Parents accepting not one artist will create landscape (8)
PANORAMA: Place two informal parents around (accepting) a two-letter synonym of “not one” and the usual two-letter abbreviation for an artist.
2d A dozen letters on large bunch of keys (5)
ATOLL: Split 1,2,1 the first dozen letters of the alphabet and the abbreviation for Large.
3d Complain about noise made by drunkard in Barnet (7)
MOHICAN: A synonym of complain or carp around a stereotypical sound attributed to someone who has drunk too much alcohol
4d Baby animal number five or eight, perhaps (4)
CUBE: If we split the solution 3,1 it would be a way of labelling a baby animal based upon the position of the final letter in the alphabet.
6d Ace assistant keeping control in general (7)
AGRIPPA: The abbreviation for Ace and an abbreviated assistant or secretary go around a synonym of control or hold.
7d Great Dane barking where refreshments are served (3,6)
TEA GARDEN: Anagram (barking) of GREAT DANE.
8d Playing match with nothing in it, Real’s great scorer (6)
MAHLER: Anagram (playing) of the outside letters of MatcH plus REAL.
10d Dramatic heroine leaves for a meal with princess (8)
CRESSIDA: The leaves here are for a salad or an egg sandwich perhaps . Add a princess from a comic opera.
14d Almost grasping wine vessel filled with claret (4,4)
VENA CAVA: The vessel here is a vein. A synonym of grasping or mercenary without its last letter is followed by a sparkling wine.
16d Freud probably spent this second relaxing (9)
SCHILLING: The abbreviation for Second and an informal word for relaxing. The solution is an old currency of the country in which Freud was born
17d Kind of drink I really drink (8)
ISOTONIC: I from the clue, a 2-letter adverb meaning really and a type of drink often mixed with gin.
19d Two chessmen sharing a square is cheating (7)
ROOKING: The final letter of one chess piece and the initial letter of another share a square on the crossword grid. Very clever.
20d Transport locum doctor around during uprising (7)
OMNIBUS: A 3-letter abbreviatied locum or SUBstitute plus an abbreviated doctor around a synonym of during are all reversed.
21d Reason against blocking tidal flow up in channel (1,1,1,3)
BBC ONE: Place a “reason against” inside (blocking) a reversal (up) of a tidal flow.
24d Tipped over fruit juice drink in drinking bowl (5)
JORUM: The reversal (tipped over) of an abbreviated fruit juice followed by an alcoholic drink
25d Girl from Spain, and something she inherits (4)
EDNA: THE IVR code for Spain and something we all inherit I presume from our parents.
19d was my favourite, which ones did you like?