Thursday, 2 December 2021

No 13417, Thursday 02 Dec 2021, Sunnet

Solution to 22D has been deliberately left unsolved and is to be answered only by a non-regular / novice commenter, with proper annotation. Those who have answered earlier in the week, please give others a chance.

1   Hit and walked out (6) STRUCK [DD]
4   Walk across to smash top serve (4,4) STEP OVER*
10 Some quit dancing after acquiring some sprains and twists (9) MISQUOTES {SOME+QUIT+Sp...s}*
11 Improve a meeting (5) RALLY [DD]
12 Beer with a drop of orange (5) POINT {P{Or...e}INT} Definition?
13 Engraver’s dash does not start at the origin (5-4)  PRINT-HEAD {sPRINT}{HEAD}
14 May possibly become disheartened and leave an insect (4-3) MOTH-FLY {MOnTH}{FLY}
16 Publication returned to England’s match (4) GAME {MAG<=}{E}
19 Rule on new grass (4) LAWN {LAW}{N}
21 Pain ruptured around the receding furrow (7) TORTURE {TOR{RUT<=}E}
24 Killing performance (9) EXECUTION [DD]
25 Devil’s two (5) DEUCE [DD]
26 Help! Verse is jumbled (5) SERVE*
27 Perhaps coconut oil to freshen and to massage chin outside (4,5) HAIR TONIC {H{AIR}{TO}NIC*}
28 A tragedy perhaps to give society’s publicity materials to a British politician (3,5) SAD STORY {S}{ADS}{TORY}
29 Pedals clearly cool e-books on the margins (6) CYCLES {Cl...lY}{CooL}{Eb..kS}

1   Waste water remover mostly adds to hesitation in public-private partnership (4,4) SUMP PUMP  {SUMs}{PP{UM}P}
2   Reed’s elected to act carelessly (4,4) RUSH INTO {RUSH}{IN}{TO}
3   Forum to woo (5) COURT [DD]
5   Difficult examination in Germany (7) TESTING {TEST}{IN}{G}
6   Office clock is one that works occasionally (4-5) PART-TIMER {PART}{TIMER}
7   Hollow ball replaces a shower (6) VOLLEY V(-a+o)OLLEY
8   Worried Ray hid the capital (6) RIYADH*
9   Opts to change before visit (4,2) STOP BY {OPTS}*{BY}
15 Apartment you furnished is pretentious (9) FLATULENT {FLAT}{U}{LENT}
17 A mutual arrangement covering some nitty-gritties of the fall (8) AUTUMNAL {A}{UTUM{Ni...s}AL*}
18 Shield from French receiver (8) DEFENCES {DE}{FENCES}
20 Nor’s partner in ‘Crime Central’ is captured by underworld (7) NEITHER {NE{crIme}THER}
21 16 of Courier? Wrong web withdrawal (6) TENNIS {SIN}{NET}<=
22 Straps to capture small creatures (6) ?E?S?S (Addendum - BEASTS {BEA{S}TS} - See cooments)
23 Mocked ruddy entrance exam initially (6) JEERED {RED}<=>{JEE}
25 Silly to use 12 unknown numbers (5) DITZY {DIT}{Z}{Y}

Reference List
England = E, New = N, Society = S, Germany = G, From in French = DE, Small = S, Entrance exam = JEE, Unknown numbers = Y,Z



6th July 2008: Let us STOP BY at the All England LAWN TENNIS and Croquet Club, which is hosting its Mens’ Singles Final GAME at Wimbledon. It is a TESTING time for the ground staff to deal with the vagaries of the English weather. Although it is summer, there has been an almost AUTUMNAL rain at night and they have had to use SUMP PUMPS to drain out the water from the outfields of the Centre COURT. You know, it was before the retractable roof was installed for this only grass venue where Grand Slam events are held. NEITHER Rafael Nadal nor Roger Federer is sure which of them is going to script tennis history when they STEP OVER the portals of this hallowed ground. FedEx has won the 3 previous occasions here against Rafa, but has just lost to him in The French Open the previous month.

The SAD STORY is that both the champs are not in their best physical condition. Federer is recovering from the infectious mononucleosis that he contracted probably at the RIYADH airport, while he was on his way to the Dubai Tennis Championships a few months back. Nadal is TORTUREd by pain in his injured left foot. But, once on the ground, they are like charging BEASTS. The powerful SERVE of Rafa wins him the first 2 sets 6-4, 6-4. Wearing down his rival with an epic RALLY, Federer springs back winning the next two sets 7-6, 7-6 saving two championship POINTs in that historic fourth set tiebreak. The crowd which sat with a bated breath let out a collective gasp as Federer VOLLEYs with a power-packed forehand from the baseline to win the tiebreak. How the DEUCE  he manages to do that against the powerful stroke from Nadal is something only Federer and his Maker will know.

Rain plays spoilsport at this juncture and the game is held up for 30 minutes. The crowd which JEERED restlessly during the interruption is once again quiet as the players RUSH INTO the ground in fading light for the final set. STRUCK with brute force but with pin-point precision by Federer, the ball breaks the DEFENCES of Nadal and Federer comes to within two points for his sixth consecutive win at this most prestigious venue.  The deft EXECUTION of breaking FedEx’s serve in the 15th game of the final set is the turning point. The younger Nadal wins with an unbelievable 9-7 in near darkness at 9.15pm, in the longest final that lasted more than 4 ½ hours. The CYCLES of win and loss will no doubt continue for these fabled opponents.


  1. Kindly read & leave ur comments.

    1. How about writing a combined tale, Gowri? I will do part 1 with about 50% of solution words and mail it to you, you can complete it with the remaining ones. We could do this on a Friday as the tale is put up only at 4pm and we will have time. My mail ID is

    2. Doctor - if u dont mind - can we do it on Saturday?
      As already mentioned- i am an employed architect. 9- 7 working. The cooking dinner etc with an aged MIL at home. Then solving the CW. Then writing. Saturday - i work till 1pm. Will have a go at it immediately.

    3. Doc - one more thing. After yday - u sure will go down in the annals of this portal's history as the Master Story teller who made many a readers' day or night in my case.
      Equally History may not forgive u easily for inspiring half baked writers like me.
      My family thinks - i am like a Monster unleashed. No Control. Over flow of words. 😊😊😊

    4. My id -

    5. Ok. I hope the colonel and fellow bloggers wouldn't mind the delay on Saturday

    6. A suggestion. On other days of the week Gowri's piece can appear the following day.

    7. Half baked?! If this is half baked,I wonder how a fully baked one will be. That apart,you can't bake anything fully without going through the half baked stage!

    8. I like the idea of your writing a story together.
      I am sure we can expect a great story like Sholay written by Salim Javed those days.
      Eager to look for Saturday.

  2. 12a &lit point beer with hops!

  3. 12a could be Paint
    Beer = pint
    Drop a in it
    Paint - orange is paint

    1. Unlikely. 25d confirms that it is point

    2. There was a . at end of the clue when I sent it. It seems to have got missed out at a later stage

  4. 18d receiver is a fence or fences!

    1. +1.Felt it should have been fences. Probably a typo somewhere.

    2. Yes. That was an oversight on my part

  5. 22d beasts
    Straps - beats with s
    Beasts - creatures

  6. Very happy to play some tennis in this wet weather and smash some 'Top Serve's (my COD)
    Thank you Sunnet for heeding our request and make not one but 2 pangrams. Pleasure is ours.

  7. 12a. Perhaps the full stop got missed out in the printing

  8. 25A- Deuce- It is called so because the server has to take 2 points after that (40-40) to clinch the game. I learned this long after I started playing tennis.

    1. An interesting read for you.

  9. I thought the tale would be of a match between Courier and Agassi

    1. ...but this is an Epic (though Courier is mentioned in the CW)

  10. Thank you Dr.RKE for covering my favourite sport and my tennis Idol,Fedex. Surprised you were able to bring it in such a detailed manner with the scores also.

  11. The SAD STORY of DITZY Melissa.

    Melissa was waiting on the LAWN of her bungalow for her breakfast to be SERVED and the anti-FLATULENT to be brought.

    She was excited as today she was going to have TESTING times! Having learnt all about DEFENCES and offences, she was actually going to play the GAME!

    She drove down to the District COURT.

    Alas! What a tragedy! The POINT being she went to the wrong venue where she could NEITHER play TENNIS nor chess!!

  12. Very good clues given by Sunnet. I could crack much more than yesterday.6d,14a,7d are nicely given.
    A suitable tale given by Dr.RKE. He has actually taken me to the Central court. Thanks for giving such a vivid description about the match.
    Come Saturday,I hope we will be witnessing a novel talepiece written by both Dr.RKE & Gowri.
    With regards,

  13. Decades ago Kapil Dev, one of the greatest all-rounders in Indian cricket made his debut in the ad world by modelling for a shaving cream with the words: Palmolive Da Jawab Nahi.
    In tune with this caption and slug, we can say: DR. RKE & MR. C G BHARGAV DA JAWAB NAHI !!!

  14. Totally off the track - to all u cricket & Kapil Dev fans. Please c the trailer of the movie 83 - on YouTube. It is a docudrama of Indias historic World Cup Win & an absolute aha/ nostalgic moment.

  15. Superb tale Dr. RKE!
    You converted the epic tennis battle to the story today.
    Your story of yesterday was yet another milestone. The questions at the end were really KBC stuff.
    I wonder how you get the time to link the epics to the grid's words.
    Hats off!!! Keep us entertaining.

  16. Wonderful puzzle and what an epic tale. Look forward to Saturday combo story!

  17. Very nice grid Sunnet and brilliant story by Dr RKE!
    I was also wondering about the anno for POINT and DEFENCES. Thanks for the clarification.

  18. A Classic Tennis Match
    Doctor's tale today, once again transported me to my teenage years.

    It was 1980. I had just started watching TENNIS. Till then I had only read about it, complete with the sports writers' biased MISQUOTES. I had only imagined in my mind, the green LAWNS of Wimbledon & the red COURTS of Roland Garros. It was a real TORTURE to understand all about Top shots, back hands & DEFENCES adopted by players, just through the written word & the often smudged PRINT HEADS added to my woes.

    My Dad finally invested in a TV & I learnt first hand about the 4 types of COURTS. So imagine our excitement when we found out the Wimbledon Finals would be live telecast.

    I don't know how many of you were fortunate to watch this match - a CLASSIC by even today's standards between the great Champion Bjorn Borg & the young brat John McEnroe.

    I was aware of their diametrically opposed styles of RALLY, EXECUTION, VOLLEY & SERVE, but awareness was all it amounted to.

    Star STRUCK as I was, typically with McEnroe, it still didn't stop me from cheering for Borg. The match lasting 3 hours & 53 minutes had me DITZY alternating between sweating palms, elevated heart rates & audible cries of amazement.

    It was a classic 5 setter, where the highlight was the 4th set. The tie break lasted 22 minutes & DEUCE was almost like the Referee's mantra. After TESTING waters in the earlier sets, McEnroe was all fire. RUSHING INTO the net repeatedly, he clenched it 18-16, drawing himself level with Borg.

    As always, he wore his heart on his sleeve & with his unruly mane, he often looked like a sulking BEAST, especially in contrast to the Cool Composed Borg. But that day, even the crowds refused to JEER.

    Infact as the 5th set commenced, most people in the audience must have experienced FLATULENCE, with the high level of tension. Even my mom, a PART TIME watcher of the game, STOPPED BY to see the remaining match. To be honest, NEITHER player had any distinct advantage at this juncture.

    Well the rest is truly History. McEnroe saved 7 Championship POINTS, before losing to Borg - 1-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-7, 8-6.

    It is indeed a SAD STORY, that it took 28 years for this match to be rivalled by the 2008 Federer vs Nadal match.

    Now in my AUTUMNAL years, when I review that match in my mind, what I feel is, what those 2 players possessed, even with their contrasting style, was easy grace of play, almost absent from the modern Men's game, where a premium on heavy hitting often trumps all else. Lithe & fleet of foot, they hailed from another era where delicacy was valued more than destruction.

    Well time & tide wait for no one & as newer achievements are made & fresher milestones conquered, these classic moments do get reduced to mere nostalgic moments.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. Beautifully written! Thanks to you,I re-lived those tense moments. In fact,I was half expecting Dr.RKE to cover this match,though I am an ardent fan of Federer. I am now happy.
    A nice point- My father 'invested' in a TV set! (Yes,true those days) Such things come to your mind without your thinking about it.
    A doubt though- Did we have colour TV then? I doubt,at least not in Chennai.
    Clued words so easily fall in and the themed CW makes things easier.

  20. No. We had only a B&W TV till 1989. I still had to imagine the green lawns & the red courts. 😊

  21. Great story, that rings so true

  22. Lovely recall of an epic match. Great writing Gowriji.