Toughie No 2870 by Stick Insect
Hints and tips by Tilsit
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment *****
Greetings from the Warrington tropics!
I’m holding the fort for our Lovely Crypticsue who is meandering around the Emerald Isle for a few more days and will be back for the weekend.
Thanks to everyone for the nice messages about the site and the warm wishes for BD. I’ll give him a call later and check-in. A big thank you to the other bloggers and setters who have rallied round to help out. A new Rookie Corner puzzle will be going up today, and there will be an NTSPP for Saturday. We should have enough stuff for the next couple of weeks. I’ll update you as needed.
So back to today’s Toughie, and we have Stick Insect in the midweek slot with a very agreeable puzzle that was nicely challenging and provoked a little head-scratching in the top right-hand corner. I thought we were on for a pangram, but I noticed a couple of absentees.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. Thanks to Stick Insect for a lovely Wednesday puzzle. I’ll see you at the weekend.
1a. Mistake in fling resulting in drink (6)
SHERRY A word for a mistake goes inside a word meaning to fling, think fairgrounds and coconut.
4a. Sadly coming short (6)
GNOMIC An unusual word meaning short and pithy is an anagram (sadly) of coming.
8a. Put out about let (8)
RELEASED The short word meaning about and something meaning let or rented.
10a. Staff independent city paper (6)
MANILA A word sum. Something meaning to staff + an abbreviation for Independent and the abbreviation associated with an American city
11a. Delay last visit (4)
STAY Three definitions for one word.
12a. Bar in vacated interim structure (10)
IMPEDIMENT Using the first and last letters of INTERIM and adding an architectural term for a structure gives you a word for a bar or obstruction.
13a. What chess expert does? Works of art (12)
MASTERPIECES If you split the word into two, you will get te cryptic answer to the question posed in the clue.
16a. Support answer further with main point about apostle (12)
PROPAGANDIST A word for a support plus the abbreviation for answer followed by a word for the main point of an argument that includes something meaning with or accompanying. This leads you to a word for an apostle.
20 The City team replacing Guardiola, essentially, with head of recruitment ushering in Zola (6,4)
SQUARE MILE A complicated clue. A word for a team (of players), which loses the central letter of GUARDIOLA (essentially) and replaces it with the first of the word RECRUITMENT. Add to this the first name of the French novelist.
21 Grand arena houses challenge (4)
DARE A hidden answer.
22a. Eden perhaps difficult around Arizona (6)
HAZARD The name of a famous sportsman called Eden is found by taking something meaning difficult around the US state abbreviation for Arizona.
23 Struggling marines succeeded in close call (4,4)
NEAR MISS An anagram (struggling) of MARINES plus an abbreviation for succeeded.
24a. Time right to involve opponents in rubber (6)
ERASER The name for a period of time with an abbreviation for right. Inside this goes the abbreviation for two opposing players in the card game bridge.
25a. You and I discovered bird act is eccentric (6)
WEIRDO This puzzled me for a while, but I think this works like this: A word for You and I, plus the middle bit (dis-covered) of BIRD and add a short word meaning to act.
1d. Phantom jockey crept inside stall regularly (8)
SPECTRAL Inside the alternate letters (regularly) of STALL goes an anagram (jockey) of CREPT.
2d. Base member beginning to yatter in song of mourning (5)
ELEGY A word for a memorial song or poem is found by taking a mathematical abbreviation for a base, then adding a member (or part) of the body and the first letter of YATTER.
3d. More dangerous rioter heartlessly surrounds runner (7)
RISKIER Around the word for a type of runner effective on snow or water, goes RIOTER minus its middle two letters (heartlessly)
5d. Wandering Bill adopted by leaderless 4 (7)
NOMADIC Something meaning wandering is found by taking the answer to 4 across, minus its first letter (leaderless) with the word for a bill or poster inside.
6d. Note is occasionally read and belittled (9)
MINIMISED The name for a short type of musical note, plus IS and the alternative letters from READ.
7d. Part of gut last to enjoy settlement (6)
COLONY: The word for a part of your stomach system plus the last letter of the word ENJOY.
9d. What one might show in Pompeii? (11)
DUPLICATION: This puzzled me and I think it is a cryptic definition to what the abbreviation for one is demonstrating in the word POMPEII.
14d. Arresting outlaw to criticise a head honcho (3,6)
TOP BANANA: TO, plus a word meaning criticise holds (arresting) something meaning outlaw.
15d. Drink in drunken bout, mostly restrained by oil company (8)
ESPRESSO: Inside the name of a petrol company goes a word meaning a drunken event (or a shopping one, or a drunken shopping one!). That gives something I am indulging in a lot at the moment.
17d. Behind old greenery, southern resistance is hiding (7)
OVERDUE: After the abbreviation for old goes a word for greenery that has two letters that represent resistance. The second or Southern one goes missing to give a word for behind or late. Clever.
18d. State one’s number of years? That’s mean (7)
AVERAGE: A word meaning to state and one’s number of years. My first one in today!
19d. Compare half of horse’s bit (6)
EQUATE: Half of a word that means ‘of horse’ and something meaning bit.
21d. Object of French flipping strange (5)
DEMUR: A word meaning to disagree, or object is found by taking the French word for ‘of’ and adding a word meaning strange reversed.
Thanks to Stick Insect for a splendid puzzle that made me smile and challenged me in equal measure. I’ll see you all again sometime soon in Toughieland!