Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 23,939/Paul – How’s that?

Posted by neildubya on December 9th, 2006


A puzzle with a cricketing theme, appropriately enough for a time when the Ashes are being decided. Not sure how much fun this would have been for those with no interest or knowledge in cricket but it didn’t contain any particularly obscure terms. Given that, I thought this was much easier than most Paul puzzles; I did it in about 30 mins, which is pretty quick for me.

8 (s)PECULATE – ref to 7D (OPENER)
11 (he an answer)*
14 DELIVERY – nothing to do with the invention of the game.
15 CRICKET – the theme for the crossword. Easily clued I thought, so unlocking the rest of the puzzle is fairly straightforward..
17 R in BADMAN – according to Chambers a badman is an outlaw but I guess it doesn’t take a huge leap of imagination to see the devil as a bad man.
20 TAG in CON< in SO< – the last one to go in. Cleverly constructed but the surface reading didn’t do much for me.
26 CHINAMAN – I’d heard of this word in reference to cricket but I didn’t know what it was. Apparently it’s a left arm leg spinner and the BBC’s Sport Academy can tell you how to bowl one.
3 WAS* in HER – “that woman/lady/man” is usually an indicator for her/him.
4 (o)VER, AND A – a confusing clue to parse because of all the numbers, especially if you hadn’t got any of 2D, 6D and 14A. If you’d solved 6D (El Salvador) it would be pretty apparent that the reference to 6 was to the number not the clue so the whole thing reads like this: “(DUCK=0) away from 6 (DELIVERY)s = VER + AND + A.
5 APPEALER – “a peeler”. Refs to a bowler’s cry of “owzat”? and the nickname of the first policemen in the UK.
6 (sad all over)*
13 LOCK AND KEY – I think one of the cricketers here is Tony Lock and the other is Robert Key.
16 GOT in SPIRE(up) – the def of “journeys alone” is obviously cryptic.
21 R in CEASE
22 YE, SS, I, R – the definition is “with this, salute”. “Ye” is an old word for “the”, ship is “ss” and “r” is the last letter (close) of “harbour”. Nicely constructed.

2 Responses to “Guardian 23,939/Paul – How’s that?”

  1. says:

    I disagree that the Ashes are being decided – on England’s performance so far, they are being given away!

    Enjoyed this puzzle despite depression over the cricket – one stupid mistake for 7d where I put TURNER (after Glenn Turner, NZ cricketer in 70’s – though it did seem to fit the KEY allusion) so took me a while to complete.

  2. says:

    How quickly events overtake you! I actually wrote my post about the puzzle last week, soon after solving it, when the Ashes were very much still being decided. Really should have updated my post but it didn’t occur to me.

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