Times Saturday 23629 (16th June)

Posted on Categories Weekend Cryptic
I had a complete Internet outage last week due to a number of problems (BT work at the exchange mainly, but then they changed my connection protocol without telling me. It seemed to be connecting last night but only for a minute or so at a time – I couldn’t stay on long enough to put up a marker page, let alone do a full report). Seems to be a bit better this morning, but I’m posting this from work now anyway.

Solving time: > 30 mins, but that’s probably me having a bad day rather than an indication of difficulty! 14ac gave me some trouble – I’m one of the few humans not to have read it.


1 SPAG BOL – S + “lob gap” rev. What everyone calls it, but I was still surprised to see it in the dictionary!
5 WHAT FOR – excellent cryptic definition.
9 U(NOB)V,IOUS – I like UV = “tanner”
12 CYBERCAFE (baccy free)* – what a great anagram, and surface image of stoned surfers on a beach.
14 THE(DA VINCI,COD)E – DA VINCI=”painting”, I suppose that’s OK, in the sense that “the Mona Lisa is a Da Vinci”. COD=fake, one of the lesser-known meanings of the word. All surrounded by THEE.
19 THREE BLIND MICE – I like “tailed by the Dutch”, but don’t know who the “proverbial crowd of ignorant cowards” were, despite a brief Internet search.
23 G(l)AZ(i)ER
25 K((o)IL(y),(c)LA(y),(u)RN(s))EY – I couldn’t make head or tail of this at first, but the answer was obvious when all the crossing letters were in place. Still took me a while to figure out the wordplay though.
26 NEED,LED(light-emitting diode)
27 TOTT(ER)Y – totty = talent = good-looking people of the opposite sex.


2 A,BO(LI(gnite))SH – tricky wordplay, I thought
3 BEVERIDGE (“beverage”) – “picked up” being the homophone indicator. Ref. William Beveridge.
4 LEONCAVALLO (one all-vocal)* – oh dear, I’d heard of him, but thought he was an artist!
5 WAS – dated = saw = went out with.
6 AL(l),TAR – almost completely=AL(l)
8 ROSIE LEE – Cockney rhyming slang for tea
13 BA(NANAS,PL)IT – I’ve seen this answer 3 or 4 times in the last couple of weeks in various publications.
18 RUMP(0)LE – ref. Rumpole of the Bailey, fictional barrister. Nice cricket surface.
19 (s)CE(ZAN(y))NE
20 G,RE(Y)LY – rely=bank is one to watch out for.

2 comments on “Times Saturday 23629 (16th June)”

  1. Funny, I sussed the wordplay but blanked the definition!

    proverbial crowd = THREE, as in “two’s company,three’s a crowd”
    ignorant = BLIND
    cowards = MICE


  2. Poor play at celebrity cricket match?

    Just the eight “easies” in this one:

    10a Hookers finding way back on pitch (5)
    TAR TS. after incident in the front rows resulting in both number 2s in the sin-bin?

    11a Sportsman (riske)*d playing cut (5)
    SKIER. Nowt to do with making the cut in a 4 day golf tournament.

    21a Delivery smothered in labels indicates important contacts (4-5)

    24a Footballer with another helping to trap ball (5)
    MO O RE. Sir Bobby – captain of England in 1966.

    1d In which one serves or receives drink (6)

    16d One falling spectacularly for the hero? (8)

    22d Hang out tops to Dry, With Extra Long Line (5)

    25d Sort of gloves to have on (3)

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