i Cryptic Crossword 2539 Tyrus

March 29, 2019

For those among us who wanted a puzzle with a higher level of difficulty than previously offered – well, you got it, even the setter thought this was hard. As this was a Saturday prize puzzle the solvers had a bit of time to complete it, in one case three months. I haven’t got that luxury so I have to admit to a bit of electronic help and perhaps a downright cheat here and there.  The opening 8/1 clue had me completely bewildered as did quite a lot of the others to be truthful. I did know the bird at 9ac, the anagrams at 12,14 and 25ac were duly entered as was the write in at 21ac. The downs proved equally as difficult, 4 went in with a question mark but it turns out to be a really good clue, 5 raised a smile as did 14 and 15 – though I needed Google to check the spelling. The rest all became a bit of a struggle with answers going in as guesses. 3dn,10ac, 16ac and 20dn stand out among these with 16ac getting my pick for worst clue of the day, and 13dn a close second. 1dn Roost for Bed caused a frown as did Field for Entry at 22dn, but it all works (just about), even 8/1ac, explained over on Fifteensquared.

And so to COD, 5dn and 14 dn had ticks but my face palming moment was 24ac

Crucial assessment dictates outcome (4,4)

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12 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 2539 Tyrus”

  1. Cornick said

    Tough luck getting this one Sprouters!
    Agreed on 4d and 5d both being excellent, for my money 13d was even better still.
    However there were a record number of fifteen clues that I actively disliked for one reason or another – including the 14d you found smileworthy, I’m afraid; surely it’s Matt not Mat?
    Happy with the long 8/1a clue though, even if it was staring unhelpfully at me until almost at the end – just before that SLEB clue – painful!

  2. jonofwales said

    The RHS fell without too much issue, but the rest? Well, that took a while longer. 8/1 I thought was downright unfair – an unheard of phrase with a particularly unhelpful clue. Without cheating I would never have got it. I can’t say I disliked anything else, though I was more relieved to finish than anything else.

  3. Wanderlust said

    Made a rod for my own back there by banging in OBSTRUCT for 11a in the first pass – Ob + c in Strut (bar) so took longer that it needed to. 5d made me smile though.

  4. BarrieCooper said

    The usual Tyrus mixture of brilliance, silliness and downright unfairness (mistakes??).
    8/1 is in the silly category – is he trying to be funny with a drunken selfishly being Shellfishly??? That MIGHT have worked with the adjective, but not with the adverb.
    16 is in the “presumably a mistake” category.
    19 definition very dodgy, and why past tense in 23?

    On the other hand, 4,5,13 are outstanding.

    I’m with jonofwales in being relieved to have got through it

  5. Michaelatcobblerscottage said

    Some nice clues but far too many queries for me to find it at all satisfying. Quite a few I guessed but could not parse. Some more I used electronic help for and couldn’t parse.

    I too entered OBSTACLE as one of my guesses, which slowed me down.

    Quite relieved to come here and Fifteensquared and find I was not alone…

  6. dtw42 said

    Okay, after LOTS of head-scratching I got 90% of it done, but with 13, 16, 18 and 20 written only in pencil because I didn’t understand them, and 23 completely baffling. Came here to see the answers. Okay, I’d got 13 wrong, explaining why I couldn’t do 23. My guesses for 16, 18 and 20 were right though thankfully. General opinion here pretty much exactly what Michael… said above.
    8/1 – pfff.

  7. Brakewynde said

    Lots to like here. Took me a while to “winkle out” 8/1, which was a phrase I haven’t heard recently. When I first moved to London over 50 years ago shellfish stalls were Sunday lunchtime features at many pubs. The neologism “sleb” looked preposterous, but it’s probably an age thing! Predictably Esio Trot is whingeing on the other side, but I doubt if Eimi reads four-year-old blogs…

  8. Win some, lose some. This is definitely a lose sort of day…

  9. batarde said

    I’m happy. 🙂

    Finished without assistance eventually, but hell’s teeth that was a toughie. I thought 8/1 was exceedingly apposite, if taken as a comment on the people failing to run our country today – and I certainly wouldn’t put it past Eimi to have chosen the puzzle specially. It’s a phrase beloved of John Humphrys, to whom many thanks. The only one which felt like a stretch too far was 16ac.

    As for the Repetitive Reptile’s contributions elseblog, he/she either knows how to search 15² or comes here to get the link, I reckon. If the latter, feel free to chip in.

  10. Topsy said

    This was one of those where I managed a few but then I thought at my age I really cannot waste any more time on. As for 8/1, I found it to be utterly ridiculous, particularly because the actual phrase is “Unfit to……” (p.s. using a search bar isn’t that difficult 😀 )

  11. Solojo said

    Dastardly.
    Started this at bedtime, dropped off to sleep utterly mind-boggled, came back to it 2 hours ago feeling bullish & energetic, but finally threw in the towel – even with all crossers cheering me on I still couldn’t winkle out 8/1. And was so proud of filling the rest of it too. Some top clues – thought STUPID was genius, & OBSTACLE was a joy to fell. Sleb & Mat were a bit annoying. 13 & 4 made up for it though.
    Top marks for the blogging. I’m off for a bit of a lie-down..

  12. AndyO said

    Yep – not easy – finished without aid but had to guess 1a, 10, 13 & 20 before popping over to 15^2 via here – just about happy with the explanations but wouldn’t have got ‘sleb’ in a month of Sundays – which apparently is just about how long it took some solvers…

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