Sparks – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

Toughie 3164

Toughie No 3164 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty **/***Enjoyment *****

A pleasant respite between Elgars. I finished the grid within 2* time but parsed two while writing the blog. I haven’t spotted a Nina; maybe you will

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Toughie 3140

Toughie No 3140 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment *****

The clever device using 5 symmetric pairs (see 21a) helps the solve a lot, if you spot it early

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Toughie 3116

Toughie No 3116 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ****

Today’s pangram contains a few words I did not know. We also have an intriguing Nina. 85? I don’t think it’s a birthday. What could it be?

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Toughie 3100

Toughie No 3100 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty *****Enjoyment *****

That was tricky! The pangram might have helped had I seen it earlier. There is a nice Nina of my favourite Wordle start words.

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Toughie 3076

Toughie No 3076 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment *****

A lovely puzzle with some nice quirks. A Nina is seen symmetrically in the grid.

Strictly I’m not allowed to advertise here, but I hope I’ll be forgiven – if you have some time tomorrow, you might like to try my puzzle in the independent

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1a    Kit he’s left out for poacher?… Continue reading

Toughie 3052

Toughie No 3052 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment *****

A not-overly-difficult and very enjoyable puzzle by Sparks. I did notice something interesting about all the across clues (and 6 of the down ones, but that is largely as a consequence)

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Toughie 3020

Toughie No 3020 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty **/***Enjoyment ****

Oh no! My heart sank as I saw the Nina. Our condolences Sparks. How do you give an enjoyment rating for such a sad message? Many of the across answers apply to 12a Continue reading “Toughie 3020”

Toughie 2996

Toughie No 2996 by Sparks

Hints and Tips by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty *****Enjoyment *****

Sparks set the toughest of Toughies, but it is so cold outside, what else were you going to do with your Friday morning? Continue reading “Toughie 2996”

Toughie 2948

Toughie No 2948 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ****

Some things I didn’t know, but all fairly clued of course. I found some of this hard but there are quite a few easier clues sprinkled about the grid.… Continue reading