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DT Cryptic No 25888 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25888 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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

A better grid than the last couple – all entries at least 50% checked, and no isolated areas of the grid. I got through most of this pretty easily, but struggled with the NE corner, where 4, 5, 9 and the last word of 6 took longer than the rest put together.


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DT Cryptic No 25882 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25882 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

Another strange grid – if you don’t get the 15-letter answers, this is four separate crosswords, with uneven checking – the 9-letter answers are underchecked (4 of 9) and the 3s and 15s are overchecked – 3/3 and 9/15. And of course, the 4/5/7/8/10/…-letter words can’t come out to play.

Lots of the clues seem like gentle puns rather than really cryptic clues, and several of the more cryptic ones use words/definitions so close together that the clue is very easy or might lead to more than one answer Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25882 – Review”

DT Cryptic No 25876 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25876 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment **


For me, this was rather a disappointing puzzle. I’m not mad keen on the grid, with some 7-letter answers with only 3 letters checked, though some others have 5 checked letters. And like some other DT grids, it’s all short words – the longest entry is 9 letters. It does have a good side – the shortest answer is 6 letters so we get a day off from ERATO and tricky little 4-letter words.

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DT Cryptic No 25870 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25870 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***


A bit of a geography tour, this one. An easyish puzzle, though one or two words held me up a bit – finding the right “word – A = other word” at 17 in particular. * indicates an anagram in the notes below.

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DT Cryptic No 25864 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25864 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

I slipped up at 17D, but the rest was done in about an average time for a Times puzzle. Probably slower than it should have been, but I’m getting used to this setter’s style and tend to play safe with the answers that feel weak, like 21 and 13, and wait for plenty of checking letters. Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25864 – Review”

DT Cryptic No 25852 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25852 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment **

This analysis is the first contribution from Peter Biddlecombe.  Peter was Times crossword champion in 2000 and 2007 and is a pioneer in crossword blogging in the UK (see Times for the Times).  I gave this two stars for both difficulty and enjoyment, Peter has been rather more generous and upped it to three! BD.

My time for this was about 60% longer than an average Times puzzle, but I made life hard for myself with two dud answers which had to be corrected – ROUGH OUT at 6D, though the weakness of “some golf = rough” should have made me rub this out, and INCITE at 22D. Without these, an ‘average Times’ time should have been possible.

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