Sunday, 13 August 2017

The Sunday Crossword No 2956, Sunday 13 Aug 2017

1   Work with learner cutting average tree (6) POPLAR {P{OP}{L}AR}
4   Expression becomes strained in speech (6) PHRASE (~frays)
8   Language bringing new mood into action (9) CANTONESE {CA{N}{TONE}SE}
9   Pungent account followed by purge (5) ACRID {AC}{RID}
11 Completely in love with leader, man possessed by stirring resolve (4,4,5) HEAD OVER HEELS {HEAD} {OVER {HE}ELS*}
13 Broadcast boost for emergency transport operation (7) AIRLIFT {AIIR}{LIFT}
14 Coaxes knave, ignoring king, to retreat and lose ground (7) CAJOLES {JACk<=}{LOSE*}
16 Energy around alien not available in country (7) VIETNAM {VI{ET}{NA}M}
18 Indignation right in middle of power cut? (7) OUTRAGE {OUT{R}AGE}
20 Argument with spirit, good and light after endless bias (8,5) SLANGING MATCH {SLANt}{GIN}{G} {MATCH}
23 Fantastic repast with pressure off (5) SUPER SUPpER
24 Point about bug that's an orange colour (9) TANGERINE {T{ANGER}INE}
25 System joined with trough (6) METHOD {MET}{HOD}
26 Variety of myths I forge (6) SMITHY*

1   Set of cards and stuff (4) PACK [DD]
2   Cat at that point almost, after sleep, getting up (7) PANTHER {NAP<=}{THERe}
3   Fuss over allowance for worship (9) ADORATION {ADO}{RATION}
4   Find recompense arranged for calmness in crisis? (8,2,4) PRESENCE OF MIND*
5   Get to lecture with lack of power (5) REACH pREACH
6   Criminal as ruler? It's bizarre (7) SURREAL*
7   Outmoded clothing came in, not freshly cleaned (14) DECONTAMINATED {CAME+IN+NOT}* in {DATED}
10 Calamity caused by inspector's bloomer? (8) DISASTER {DIS}{ASTER}
12 Crops very restricted by rushes, plants with no plan (8) HARVESTS {HAR{V}ES}{planTS}
15 Predicament involving tester in turbulence in air current (3,6) JET STREAM {TESTER}* in {JAM}
17 Test odd bits of pollen for instance (7) EXAMPLE {EXAM}{PoLlEn}
19 Disbeliever raised cheers over hold-up (7) ATHEIST {TA<=}{HEIST}
21 Grand merriment, not medium in size (5) GIRTH {G}{mIRTH}
22 Retreat you initially refuse to admit (4) DENY {DEN}{You}



  1. Starred special at 10:30 by El Commandante

    1. Looking forward to solving this. We only had only puzzle from El Commandante, the New Year Special Jumbo.

  2. Forgot what the starred puzzle means, Sir!

    1. The starred clues do not have definition and have a common definition

  3. THC has carried puzzles with starred clues. Generally these will all relate to a theme/subject/topic. They will have only wordplay or subsidiary indication (SI) but no definition.
    I am not sure if it was I -- or Neyartha -- who used it first in THC. Ganesh doesn't seem to visit the blog mowadays. Beyond supplying his puzzle every month, he is too busy for chatter, natter or patter.

    1. I remember the events that led to starred clues in THC. It was C-Vasi who started it back in 2008 with a raga-themed crossword ( The Hindu Crossword 9198 ). Here is the link to the puzzle from The Hindu's web archive (no grid, unfortunately):

      Those were the days when The Hindu carried puzzles without bylines. So, the setter's name was not known beyond the THC inner circle at that time :)

      I had met C-Vasi at his residence shortly after that puzzle was published. Since all my puzzles have themes (I use theme words for the initial fill to seed the grid), I felt encouraged after my conversation with him. Starting from around that time, I used to send at least one starred puzzle in every set. Nowadays, we have instructions to avoid starred clues because it doesn't go well with the online solving platform.

      - Ganesh (Neyartha)

  4. I am not doing it anymore because I think the software for interactive ver hates the stars and acts funny. People need time and inclination to attend to the problem and set it right. Also, the instruction needs to be put in a separate field in the online edition - that means more organisation and work. Nowadays things are all becoming automated and automatic at scheduled times so certain things will remain unattended.