Times Cryptic No 28517 — “…and others have puzzles thrust upon them”

39:29, reflecting a very slow finish to what was otherwise a fairly normal difficulty, and truly excellent, puzzle. I was rather stuck in the upper-right corner, thanks to some particularly devious wordplay.

1 Alternative locks king removed from hot dwelling (6)
WIGWAM – WIG (alternative locks) + WA{r}M
5 Abundant crop, if spreading, smothers large island (8)
PROLIFIC – anagram of CROP IF around L + I
9 Left route before wrong turning in Welsh town (8)
LLANELLI – L + LANE + ILL reversed
10 Pickled eggs from the east a big hit (6)
STINKO – NITS reversed + K.O.

I wanted this to be LIT + OVA reversed for a long time.

11 Abandons currently popular ball at court (4,4)
12 Traitor briefly in charge of religion (6)
13 Advertise target when putting in plumbing feature (8)
PLUGHOLE – PLUG + HOLE (target when putting)

Delightfully tricky.

15 What’s added to the pot, brewing tea around noon (4)
ANTE – anagram of TEA around N
17 Last bit of craft in work, going back and forth (4)
POOP – OP reversed + OP
19 Excess from Oscar on daily[,] bar tours (8)
LEFTOVER – F.T. (daily) + O in LEVER (bar)
20 Petrify East German finally at the borders (6)
OSSIFY – OSSI (East German) + F{inall}Y
21 Sort of lining used to be covering in bed (8)
22 Stand experience of drug overdose (6)
TRIPOD – TRIP (experience of drug) + OD
23 Dieter ultimately has trouble with eccentric means to reduce fare? (8)
RAILCARD – {diete}R + AIL + CARD (eccentric)
24 Numerous staff getting on with uncertainty first (8)
MANIFOLD – MAN + OLD after IF (uncertainty)
25 Official old men backing one out on the tiles? (6)
ROOFER – REF + O + O.R. (men) reversed
2 Flipping insubstantial parts I’m going to name Olivia or Orsino? (8)
ILLYRIAN – AIRY (insubstantial) reversed in I’LL (I’m going to) + N

I parsed this correctly, but couldn’t think of AIRY, which is a wonderful synonym of ‘insubstantial’.

3 Air carrier‘s current, seemingly good plane’s outside (8)
WINDPIPE – WIND (current) + PI (seemingly good) + P{lan}E
4 Tom, say, fencing off grand and small grain store (9)
MALTHOUSE – MALE (Tom, say) around THOU (grand) + S

Kicked myself on THOU for ‘grand’ after missing it for ages. Wanted MILLHOUSE here.

5 Have to block that inept reformed Communist Party (5,3,4,3)
PAINT THE TOWN RED – OWN (have) in THAT INEPT anagrammed + RED (Communist)

‘Party’ as a verb. Would be an even better clue if the enumeration didn’t make the answer so biffable.

6 Leaves uniform during service etc at sea (7)
LETTUCE – U in LET (service) + anagram of ETC

A let is a serve (service) in tennis where the ball hits the net and goes over.

7 Spanish Steps also taken in by lover on journey (8)
FANDANGO – AND (also) in FAN (lover) + GO (journey, as a verb)
8 What meat cleaver might do / quickly? (4,4)
CHOP CHOP – double definition
14 Chemist has nothing in cracked vials? That is right (9)
LAVOISIER – O in anagram of VIALS + I.E. (that is) + R
15 A slogan about limiting consumption, basically (2,6)
AT BOTTOM – A + MOTTO reversed around TB (tuberculosis = consumption)

I saw immediately that ‘slogan’ = MOTTO, but discounted it immediately because I thought I couldn’t make words out of it!

16 Player succeeded in that specific instrument, mostly (8)
17 One wine or another drunk by computer company (8)
18 After one female goes[,] astray, it’s as expected (2,6)
OF COURSE – OFF COURSE, after one F is removed
19 Cliff externally eroded with swell rising (4-3)


98 comments on “Times Cryptic No 28517 — “…and others have puzzles thrust upon them””

  1. I made extremely heavy weather of this one and eventually completed in about 75 minutes. I wish I had remembered OSSI as an East German as I could only think of OST. My other problem with that clue was when I eventually thought of OSSIFY I wondered whether turning to bone / bony substance was the same as turning to stone / stony substance (petrify).

    I think I enjoyed the challenge but it delayed me far too long which is why I find myself commenting at 2 o’clock in the morning!

  2. More like jack – well over the hour – than jeremy for me, plus I had to cheat for the Welsh town. A lot of the synonyms or wordplay weren’t what came to my mind first, so either devious or off the wavelength

    Someone once commented about a grid like this that there are fewer links between the different quadrants. I got stuck in three of the corners with two crossing words and not much help from the rest of the puzzle.

    1. I agree about the quadrants. I much prefer it when solving a clue can help you to move into different parts of the puzzle.

  3. Another showing solidarity with previous commenters, very slow. Excellent puzzle, really tricky but well-crafted. Two NHOs – Olivia’s provenance, Lavoisier. LOI malthouse where for too long I was thinking Tom was Jerry’s nemesis – a MOUSE. Having checked, Tom was the cat (obviously). Liked the target when putting most.

    1. ILLYRIAN came to me very late in today’s proceedings but when it did I remembered a previous appearance here when it was mentioned that ILLYRIA was the setting for Twelfth Night (in which Olivia and Orsino are characters). I thought that was very recent, say a month ago at most, but it was in the QC puzzle published on 12 September last year. Tempus fugit and all that!

      1. I rarely do the QC, but Illyrian came up in the 15×15 less than a month earlier than that in August last year. That time it was ancient region, rather than Twelfth Night’s setting – I’ve never read or seen Twelfth Night.
        Tempus fugit etc, but I find I can forget crosswords much more quickly than 6 months: the puzzle used to appear in Rupert’s Australian organ 35 days after its UK publication. If I’d been overseas and bought a Times for the puzzle, then returned home and did it again 5 weeks later, it would often be nearly complete before I realised I’d done it before.
        And in years gone by Championship competitors often reported doing the heats puzzles again without realising they’d done them before.

        1. When I was in Sydney on a business trip, one of the papers there has a crossword, and on the first morning I did it, and it seemed a bit familiar but not that easy. It turned out that it is The Times crossword, but a week or two later. I am amazed at the short times the real speed merchants manage doing it unseen, since I can’t even do those times on a Crossword I did just a short time before.

          1. I spent about 3 months in Oz doing a campervan tour, took the Australian about twice a week, so about 25-ish times just to do the crossword. Never noticed that I had ever solved any of them before. I was doing the Times every day online, so was still in touch with the Times flavour. DOH!

  4. 37:59, but using aids for LLANELLI (NHO).
    I found the SE comparatively easy; it was the NW that was the most difficult, with MALTHOUSE my POI and WIGWAM my LOI. I spent too much time thinking Tom would be CAT; probably would have put in CATHOUSE if it had another letter. As it was, I only parsed MALTHOUSE after submitting. And I never saw the ROSE in PROSECCO. I liked ‘last bit of craft’. I think I’d make ILLYRIAN my COD.

  5. I messed up since I put STINGO (which I was sure was a word for a big hit, even though the rest of the wordplay didn’t seem to work (but a couple more clues were like that, I got the answer but the wordplay wasn’t immediately apparent and I moved on). I found this hard, and as has been pointed out earlier, this “E” grid almost splits the crossword into four small crosswords that have to be solved separately, there are so few links between the quadrants. I’m another who spent a time trying to justify MILLHOUSE before realising it was MALTHOUSE. I have been to LLANELLI so no problem there.

    1. Even though it was just over 50 years ago, I imagine the folk of Llanelli still talk about the day they beat the All Blacks!

        1. 😁
          And then there’s “Flower of Scotland”. But probably not best to go there, especially with the Calcutta Cup about to take place.

    2. You put STINGER instead of STINKO?
      How you did that I really don’t know
      Counting letters I’d state
      STINGER’s one less than eight
      And the answer has six, even so

    3. I’m impressed you managed to get STINGER into a six letter space! 🙂 . I was always convinced the meaning was ‘pickled’ but STINKO is so 1930s that it never occurred to me until I saw ‘nits’ backwards could work.

  6. 51m 29s
    I thought there were some very well crafted clues in this. I particularly liked PLUGHOLE, POOP, MANIFOLD and PAINT THE TOWN RED.
    I wonder how many others saw ‘Spanish Steps’ in 7d and thought: FLAMENCO?!
    In 17d I saw the word ‘another’ and pounced on SEC. I wondered why I couldn’t make sense of the rest of it.
    Like Jeremy I wanted 10ac to be LIT + OVA for quite a while.
    Thanks, Jeremy for the blog and particularly for LETTUCE, LEFTOVER and ILLYRIAN.
    With Verlaine taking over 10 minutes, I feel pleased in completing this in under an hour.

      1. Especially after FOI prolific gave the F, and third one in poop confirmed the O, and flame was the lover in the clue.
        Fortunately I spent a few seconds trying and failing to parse it, and soon enough twigged the right fandango, turning cartwheels cross the floor!

      1. I was tempted by ‘flamenco’ with the f and the o (especially by the ‘flame’ element’), but held back, being unable to parse the rest, with ‘Judaic’ finally dealing the coup de grâce. Couldn’t decide between ‘on course’ and ‘of course’ for 18dn, being unable to parse either one convincingly. So really a DNF. Challenging, and no gripes.

        1. Strangely, even though I hardly made a dent in the puzzle, I found FANDANGO pretty much straight away, as ‘fan’ as a synonym for ‘lover’ has stuck with me the way very little else has! Defeated OF COURSE by LLANELLI, though I had the right idea, but NHO the town; and even the enumeration for 5d didn’t help me …
          Too many other blanks to confess to, so now I have to proceed to my class of aspiring cryptic crossword solvers with less than usual confidence that I can impart much of use to them. Can’t say I enjoyed the defeat !

  7. A great challenge for a Friday. Loved ILLYRIAN, and the construction of AT BOTTOM. I’ve also been to LLANELLI (still can’t pronounce it), and as mentioned above, wondered how Tom could be the mouse, MALTHOUSE being unparsed.

    21′ 41″ thanks jeremy and setter.

  8. I was about the hour on this, needing to take time out for sustenance. LOI was WIGWAM. Fortunately we did Twelfth Night at school or ILLYRIAN would never have dawned on me. We’ve lived in a house for 35 years, which we’ve just sold, and I never realised that the wood-panelled walls were WAINSCOTed. If I had , I’d have put that in the particulars and added another quarter of a million to the price. When was the last time someone said STINKO? COD to AT BOTTOM. A good toughie. Thank you Jeremy and setter.

    1. Possibly Roger Thornhill (of himself) when talking on the phone to his mother at the Glen Cove police station in 1958?

      1. He denies it to his mother, but tells the doctor at the police station a few minutes later that he is ‘gassed.’

  9. 18:47. A nice Friday challenge. Like our blogger, I finished in the NE corner with LETTUCE and STINKO. I liked the ‘target when putting’, LETTUCE, WINDPIPE and ROOFER. Thanks Jeremy and setter.

  10. I thought it worth posting for those who knew him from Times for the Times that the often quirky but regular contributor Meldrew died yesterday. I had wondered where he had been recently. The Times crossword and philately were great passions.

    1. Very sorry to hear that, it will be less lively around here without him for sure. RIP horryd.

    2. Sorry to hear that. I will miss the encyclopaedic knowledge, quirky humour of his comments and gleefully impish banter. RIP Horryd

    3. I’m very sorry to hear that but thank you for posting the sad news.
      RIP horryd – one of the characters making this place so enjoyable to visit and no doubt to be missed by many.

    4. Very sad news. I suspected he must have been unwell as he has contributed so often over many years. Although controversial at times, I’ve always enjoyed his comments. RIP

    5. That’s a shame to hear, he always added to the gaiety of nations with his contributions here.

    6. RIP Horryd. I always enjoyed his curmudgeonly comments, mainly intended to épater la bourgeoisie I suspect. He will be missed.

    7. I had just gotten to know him (he sent me a couple of his books) before he told me that he was probably not long for this world. I didn’t want to believe it. Haven’t found an obituary.

    8. “I don’t believe it!” as his namesake Victor would have exclaimed in “One Foot in the Grave”. It’s always sad to lose members of our rather quirky club. RIP.

    9. I’m very sorry to hear that. His knowledge was encyclopedic, his brashness added high-Scoville spice to our discussions and I will miss his wit and his ubiquitous presence in these pages. RIP Horryd.

      1. To add to all his other fans: RIP Horryd, I too shall miss your presence and lively wit here. A sad loss indeed.

  11. I once played cricket at Llanelli, adjacent to Stradey Park, where the Scarlets beat the AB 2nd XV. I don’t remember who won, but I do remember that their wicketkeeper had Tourette’s Syndrome, which was interesting. Many overs lasted five minutes (a long time in those days), as batsmen had to keep backing away as various vocalisations rent the air!

    1. Are you sure he wasn’t Australian? Many Aussies have seemed to suffer with this affliction over the years!

  12. Liked this one, so pleased to see Antoine L at 14dn. One of the great chemists, a sad victim of the guillotine.

    RIP, Horry D ..

  13. I thought this was excellent. Lots of tough, well disguised clues but nothing obscure or unfair and some lovely surfaces. I finished in 25 minutes but had one pink square. ON COURSE was wrong, OF COURSE.


  14. About half an hour. For 4d, I took a long time to realise that ‘Tom’ was giving ‘male’, and even then I didn’t see how grand=thou. Didn’t parse PROSECCO, but with one or two letters in place it was very biffable. Wasn’t familiar with STINKO, but the wordplay was helpful. Some nice bits of misdirection here, like the ‘last bit of craft’ in POOP, where for quite a while I was trying to fit in a T. Thanks setter and blogger.

    FOI Ante
    LOI At bottom
    COD Llanelli

  15. It took me some time to get going on this, but then pennies began to drop and to my surprise I was three quarters done in 20 minutes. I then needed another 20 minutes to polish off the NW quadrant, taking 40 minutes in all (I have checked my arithmetic and it is correct). I had guessed ILLYRIAN and MALTHOUSE but parsing took a long time. Many of the clues were ingenious and some were chuckle-worthy. For some reason I just don’t like the word STINKO!
    Thanks to Jeremy and other contributors.

  16. 13:20. A tricky one but I seem to have been fairly on-wavelength. My last in by a country mile, after several minutes of head-scratching, was 4dn. I saw MOUSE for Tom, immediately thought ‘no, that’s Jerry’, but just couldn’t get the idea out of my mind. It’s funny how your mind can latch on to a wrong notion which then prevents you from seeing the clue in any other way. Or perhaps it’s just me. Eventually I bunged MALTHOUSE in as nearer to ‘grain store’ than MILLHOUSE, but without really understanding any aspect of the clue.

  17. Feel good to have got to 88% completion in an hour. Took a short break to knock off the QC, but made zero further progress.

    STINKO was a bit of a stinker. There are 100s of words for drunk, “pickled” already fairly obscure, but surely “stinko” hasn’t been used since PG Wodehouse.

    Pleased to have got LAVOISIER, great surface — “cracked vials”

    PAINT THE TOWN RED is a brilliant clue, which I didn’t fully parse until seeing the “lift and separate” needed for “Communist Party”

  18. Gave up on the hour with ILLYRIAN (I never would have got it), STINKO and LETTUCE not entered, very tricky,

    Needless to say I liked the ROSé reference, tee hee.

    RIP Horry D. You will be sorely missed.

    🙏 plusjeremy and crafty setter.

  19. 31:24, which, given the comments of others, I am very happy with. I thought this was excellent. A large part of the fun came from parsing some very ingenious clues having once decided what the answer must be. PAINT THE TOWN RED being the prime example. I still needed Jeremy to explain AT BOTTOM

    MALTHOUSE held me up for a while because, like Keriothe, I’d managed to convince myself that Tom was the mouse in the cartoon rather than (as any fule kno) Jerry. Twelfth Night for O-level made 1d very easy.

    Thanks to Jeremy and the setter

    1. 12th Night O Level helped. I instantly though that Olivia and Orsino only come together in 12th night which I of course knew was set in Illyria but failed dismally to write it in. DOH!
      Enjoyed a visit or two to Croatia, modern day Illyria.
      Was stunned the first time I went to find it WAS in the EU so my £15 two bottles of Heathrow duty freewhisky were £60, so I dumped them. Not sure how Croatia crept under the wire when I wasn’t looking.

  20. After 40 minutes I still had four unsolved in the NW quadrant. DROPSHOT broke the impasse, since the H gave a likely _HOUSE ending for 4d, then the whole answer, WIGWAM and ILYRIAN followed in quick succession, though the wordplay for WINDPIPE and MALTHOUSE eluded me.
    45 minutes.

  21. Thank you for the explanations of several answers, which I seem to have got right , more by luck than judgement. As the half-hour approached, I just bunged in words which more-or-less fitted, without really understanding how the clues worked.

    And I was delayed by 10a, where I wanted the eggs to be ROE, which could be reversed to make METEOR, a big hit, perhaps, but not what was required.

  22. 37 minutes. Avoided the pitfalls except for sticking with “flamenco” which delayed me in the NE. Glad we don’t have to pronounce as well as parse our answers; I would have had no hope with LLANELLI. I had little idea about ILLYRIAN, other than suspecting that ‘Olivia and Orsino’ were probably Shakespearean characters, but I did manage to see the wordplay which helped.

    LOI and favourite was MALTHOUSE.

    RIP Horryd.

  23. I thought this was a brilliant crossword, even though it took me 75 minutes (with a couple of light aids from lists, on STINKO and JUDAIC). Many times I filled something in with a shrug and only after doing so saw the elegant construction. I too thought it was going to be a mouse, unaware that Tom was the cat.

    Sad about Horryd. He clearly knew a huge amount about many things and was often very interesting. I was always curious about how someone can live in Shanghai and evidently post so freely. Are the press reports of a police state in China unfounded? He had evidently lived a most interesting life and if someone knows about it I’d be most interested to hear.

      1. According to Campaign, He created such classics as the Silk Cut ‘Zulu’ ad, the Fiat Strada ‘robots’ commercials and the Gilbeys Gin ‘Glen Baxter’ campaign. He also
        worked consistently on the Hamlet account.

        You can see his work here: https://youtu.be/ij2LNSgDufM. Not a bad legacy.

  24. Kudos to the setter – must have taken ages to compile a crossword in which nearly every clue was tortuous!

  25. A Friday beast indeed, but satisfying to solve(eventually!). ANTE and CHOP CHOP were first in, but they were lonely for quite a while. ROOFER and PROSECCO then joined the party and the slow journey through the treacle continued. STINKO and JUDAIC held up the completion of the NE but still arrived before most of the NW, where the logjam was finally broken by PLUGHOLE and LLANELLI. I postulated that 2d might begin with ILL and WIGWAM turned up and begat WINDPIPE. AIRY was inverted and inserted into ILL___N and that left 4d which I failed miserably to parse and shoved in from definition. 52.19. Thanks setter and Jeremy.

  26. I did not finish, first time in a long time. Fell apart in the north-east having decided that flamengo was in fact a dance, which although is justifiable from the wordplay, it’s simply not a word. This led too ova being used for the eggs part of stinko, and subsequent failure.

  27. Completed in two goes, so no time recorded but definitely well over an hour. When I say completed, I mean that I thought I had finished with my LOI 15dn. It turns out that my inventive answer was incorrect
    AT BOTTOM never occurred to me as did the MOTTO part of it which I’m sure would have given it to me. In the end I decided it had to be a latin phrase, and managed to concoct AD FORTUM which at least went some way to parsing the clue. It certainly sounds like it should be a latin phrase even though it isn’t!
    Almost put in LLANELLY for 9ac which was for many years the way most people spelt it, even in Wales. After looking it up, I see that the spelling officially changed to the Welsh language spelling in 1966.

  28. 41:15 but…

    …pink square for typing OSSIFT! Had had two weeks of error-free days before that. Grr.

    NE finished quickly with exception of 10a.

    Plucked LAVOISIER out of the air early on (wouldn’t have known who he was) which helped fill out the SE corner with exception of 21a.

    Then NW – all parsed with exception of pencilled-in MALTHOUSE – somehow came up with that from The House That Jack Built (the rat eats the malt – spoiler alert!) – didn’t think of anything else, but had no idea how it worked.

    Finally left with 10a, 21a, 22a and 15d. STINKO entered without fully understanding as had though the O might be an egg as well as the NITS in which case, what was the K doing? WAINSCOT was a nice pdm. And then TRIPOD which gave the unsatisfying and initially not understood AT BOTTOM.

    RIP Horryd

  29. Eventually completed without aids, but it took a very long unrecorded time. Really tough going: perhaps I was just out of sorts.

  30. DNF having fallen down the same rabbit holes as others with flamenco and a fixation that 10ac (STINKO) ended in AVO.
    Promising start with PROLIFIC & LLANELLI.
    I too did Twelfth Night for O level, and once the name Malvolio had crossed my mind, it took a while to go back to basics.
    My father’s job with the MOD moved from England to South Wales in 1972. Prospective work colleagues took him out for lunch. The talk in the pub was of an important rugby match that week. My father made a comment along the lines of ‘why on earth are the All Blacks coming to play Llanelli? ‘ . The result is legendary amongst Welsh rugby fans . Not quite sure how my father lived it down.
    So sorry to hear of the death of one of the regular contributors.
    Thanks to setter and blogger.

  31. To start with, I was almost unable to get anything. I was casting around desperately till I found ANTE and then CHOP CHOP which gave me POOP. At this point I confidently asserted I would be unable to finish this one. However, bit by bit they trickled in, as I began to tune in to the setter. To my surprise, I found I’d completed NW and SE corners with sizeable gaps in the others. The NHO chemist was an exercise in probability, confirmed by the crossers. Liked PAINT THE TOWN RED a lot for its neat clueing and having an L second in 9A convinced me it also began with one. All parsed correctly except 13A, where I correctly deduced that a hole could be a target in golf, but failed to see that I was being handed it on a plate with ‘putting’. Doh! LOI THESPIAN, which annoyed me a lot, since we had THESP very recently and I was thinking of every kind of player except the theatrical kind.
    Really sad to hear confirmed that Horryd has passed away. A great loss to this site. If anyone comes across any sort of obituary, I do hope they will post it here, or a link to it. I would love to have met him.

  32. 25:34, 1 error. A struggle but an entertaining one, as we always like on a Friday. Sadly, I was undone by STINKO, being another who put in STINGO, which – now I check it – is a strong bottled beer brewed by Sam Smith’s. This is doubtless why my brain made the connection, having been STINKO on STINGO at some point in the past.

  33. Failed with my last two, STONKO and ILLDRAWN (I was never going to guess ILLYRIAN). But, for me, that’s not bad for a Friday.
    Sad news about Horryd; seems quite sudden.

  34. 53 minutes. It was easy at first and suddenly it wasn’t. But the harder clues were enjoyably hard, and the answers came with a satisfying click.

  35. Struggled a bit, but finished in just under 60 minutes. Surprised by others who also seemed to struggle but quoted completion times of under 25 minutes. When I finish in <25 minutes, I feel I’ve done really well. Must get quicker.

  36. Nice Friday job!
    Sadly joining in the lamentations for Horryd and hope that someone has a route to pass on our thoughts to his family and so on?

  37. 16:39

    I think my time would have been much longer if I hadn’t finally kicked my habit of having to stubbornly start in the NW corner every day. So after staring in disbelief at 1Ac and 2Dn for a couple of minutes I dropped my gaze to 15Ac ANTE and was away, quickly filling in the SW. As I felt more confident, the right half fell quickly, and when I returned to 2Dn ILLYRIAN suggested itself from Olivia and Orsino, parsed afterwards. I’m another who fell for associating Tom with “MOUSE” for far too long!

    My last entry was 1Ac WIGWAM, which wasn’t half as difficult as my first glance had suggested. All goes to show, in my own case anyway, that psychology plays a big part in my solving speed. If I allow my brain to think “Oh gosh, this looks hard”, I’ll invariably trick myself into overthinking what are actually straightforward clues. So the trick is to convince myself early on that the crossword holds no fears. Of course, a couple of early fill-ins does help the process.

  38. Since someone mentioned yesterday Verlaine would be on the US TV show Jeopardy I remembered to tune in last night and recognized him from his voice from his puzzle solves online. Anyways he won easily (around 45000 dollars I think) and will be back on tonight.

    1. I’ve already seen tonight’s show! Matthew posted a YouTube video on Facebook.
      Spoiler alert: He will be on the show again on Monday.

  39. What a superb puzzle this was! After an hour I was still missing two entries (ILLYRIAN, eventually solved from wordplay, and JUDAIC after an alphabet trawl from ?U?AIC), but they came in 6 minutes after again sitting down to the puzzle. Hardly any straightforward clues, they all needed careful reading and staying alert. I loved the consumption = TB in AT BOTTOM (I was expecting it but couldn’t see right away where it might go), the “target when putting” in PLUGHOLE and the LETTUCE leaves, among many other things.

  40. Completed it after an epic struggle, but had ‘Illgrown’ and ‘Millhouse’ at 2d and 4d.
    Some great clues: AT BOTTOM and DROP SHOT, but a very unfriendly grid!
    I remain a silver whose limit seems to be at the 115-120 SNITCH level.

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