Monthly Club Special 20,214: Well *I* Didn’t Find This 28ac

A tough puzzle even by Monthly Club standards I thought, involving not just the usual pangrammatic vocab from all four corners of the club, but also some unusually inventive cryptic devices (my hat is off to 15dn) and very devious definition parts – “bronze not going”, “hides garment”, “big race”, that kind of thing. I almost made it to the finish line unscathed but was cruelly defeated at the last hurdle by the, let’s be fair, somewhat tortuous 24ac where my rusty French deserted me and I entered HENEQUIN, a valid spelling for the Mexican agave plant but one that fails to take into account that QUI is Gallic for “who”, not “that”. Oh for the crossers to have been a little kinder on that one.

Still no complaints overall about an excellent crossword that tested me to my utmost as a MCS jolly well should. Many thanks and shaken fists to the setter!

1 Champion’s cover lapsed(8)
BACKSLID – BACK’S LID [champion’s | cover]

6 Conversation turned away from church coffee morning? (6)
KLATCH – TALK turned away from CH [conversation; church]

9 Warm boot? Dirt, by chance, about to be removed from both (6)
MUKLUK – MU{c}K, by LU{c}K, C to be removed from both [dirt; chance; about]

10 Bronze not going to every person, cheers restrained (8)
PERMATAN – PER MAN [to every person], TA [cheers] restrained

11 Indian primate’s minor part in Catholicization (4)
ZATI – hidden in {catholi}ZATI{on}

12 Hasty composition from wife in pain (10)
WHIPSTITCH – W HIP STITCH [wife | in | pain]

14 Put out, I ponder about series of barbs (8)
VEXILLUM – VEX I + MULL about [put out; I; ponder]

16 On return, informal greeting having Greek in frenzy(4)
ORGY – on return, YO having GR in [informal greeting; Greek]

18 A case of couples inside wetsuit not touching (4)
ETUI – hidden piecemeal in {w}ET{s}UI{t}

19 The Spanish cabinet’s uncertain refusal to embrace Amaiur’s right wing (8)
VARGUENO – VAGUE NO [uncertain | refusal] to embrace {Amaiu}R

21 Major confrontation’s beginning: monk abused lapsed sect member (4,6)
JACK MORMON – (MAJOR C{onfrontation} MONK*) [“abused”]

22 Odd bits of a set of sports clothing exchanged for coloured fabric (4)
IKAT – odd bits of A KIT [a set of sports clothing] exchanged, i.e. the first and third letters need to swap places

24 Nice that fellow Geordie, perhaps, should head new plant(8)
HENEQUEN – QUE [Nice = French word for “that”] (which) HE NE [fellow | northeastern = Geordie, perhaps] + N [new]

26 Answer periodical claims over musical drama (6)
AZIONE – A ZINE claims O [answer; periodical; over]

27 Scrub floor originally fouled by son (6)
FYNBOS – F{loor} + (BY SON*) [“fouled”]

28 Eggs, oily and packed with energy, not a good way to do them (4,4)
OVER EASY – OV{a g}REASY [eggs | oily], packed with E [energy], not A G [a | good]

2 Group with bugle stir anti-aircraft shelters (5)
AJUGA – JUG [stir] (which) AA [anti-aircraft] shelters

3 While away, one thrill is carrying home tobacco substitute (11)
KILLIKINICK – KILL I KICK [while away | one | thrill] is carrying IN [home]

4 Scot’s watch that is fancy to be stolen (8)
LIKEWALK – LIKE [fancy] + WALK [to be stolen]

5 VIP motioned old, old MP to shift double quick! (6,9)

6 Hides garment in bottom of trunk, horizontally, concealing cape (6)
KAROSS – {trun}K + A{c}ROSS [horizontally, “concealing” C for cape]

7 Mobile you’ll find there, made in a certain style (1,2)
A LA – differently punctuated, ALA. = Alabama = the state in which you’ll find Mobile

8 O perhaps for one of one hundred healthy, convincing, missing conclusions (9)
CHALCOGEN – C [one hundred] + HAL{e}, COGEN{t} [healthy, convincing, both “missing conclusions”]. O = oxygen, the first chalcogen in the periodic table.

13 Solution for skin problem I had “neat” — then I had to have water passed round (11)
IDOXURIDINE – I’D OX, then I’D to have URINE passed round [I had; neat; I had; urine]

15 Wit of the day recalled, seldom missing a stroke (9)
EUTRAPELY – TUE [= Tuesday = day] recalled + RARELY “missing a stroke” from the second R and becoming RAPELY

17 French dish ordered includes S African bread (8)
BRANDADE – BADE includes RAND [ordered; S African bread (ie money)]

20 Books to enter first part of the summer’s big race (6)
JOTUNS – OT to enter JUN’S [Old Testament = books; first part of the summer’s]. JUN, JUL, and AUG are the three parts of the summer, abbreviated.

23 Tanner that’s lost rather quietly turning up in trees(5)
ALNUS – SUNLA{mp} [tanner, as in something that tans, that’s lost its MP = mezzo-piano = rather quietly], turning up

What h-honeycomb maker briefly turns to? Not to wax (3)
EBB – B-BE{e} reversed

One comment on “Monthly Club Special 20,214: Well *I* Didn’t Find This 28ac”

  1. I knew some of the words (BACKSLID, ORGY, EBB and OVER EASY) and managed to deduce a lot of the rest, but also fell at the HENEQUI/EN hurdle, my LOI. Ah well, a month’s wait to find out what I got wrong this time, if anything.
    1 and a half hours, but with aids.

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