Cityish Alt-ish Fortyish (verlaine) wrote in times_xwd_times,
Cityish Alt-ish Fortyish
verlaine
times_xwd_times

Times 28,007: Footymania

In keeping with the present zeitgeist, this crossword has multiple football XI's in it, one of them even Italian, to celebrate Italy's recent 3-0 win over Switzerland. (Can I just say I'm borderline offended by somebody called Immobile apparentl;y scoring a goal? I bet he wasn't.) And then just for good measure it threw in some cricket stuff too, to ensure there was something for every taste.

Some brilliant clues in the mix - I loved the elegant surfaces of "Ray washes trousers and pants" and "Short fat kid visits relations". Deceptively simple, but amazingly hard to do. 4dn, 8dn and 16dn are brilliantly inventive, and 17dn may be a WOW (word of the week). I don't know if 8dn, and indeed 9ac, quite work - can anyone add enlightenment to my own attempts to parse them? But even if they don't you cannot fault this puzzle's ambition and originality. Well Friday'd, setter, well Friday'd!

1 Urge to fight: one’s content to be beaten eventually? (3-3)
EGG-BOX - EGG [urge] + BOX [to fight]. The content of an egg-box is eggs, which may eventually get beaten

5 Rode with buggy as car started improperly? (3-5)
HOT-WIRED - (RODE WITH*) ["buggy"]

9 Valued systems regularly used in these times (8)
ASSESSED - S{y}S{t}E{m} S{y}S{t}E{m} in A.D. [these times]. Plus an extra SE that, I cannot tell a lie, I don't know where it comes from.

10 Poorly preserved (4,2)
LAID UP - double def

11 Daring to spoon jam (10)
BOTTLENECK - BOTTLE [daring] + NECK [to spoon]

13 Religious pioneer, one going against the mainstream (4)
EDDY - double def. Mary Baker Eddy is the founder of Christian Science

14 For Caesar, that is, time to depart (4)
IDES - ID ES{t} [Latin for "that is", minus T(ime)], &lit

15 See that on a broadcast and be amazed (3,4,3)
EAT ONE'S HAT - (SEE THAT ON A*) ["broadcast"]

18 Short fat kid visits relations (5-5)
GREAT-AUNTS - GREAS{e} ["short" fat] "visited" by TAUNT [kid]

20 A physicist, he died after backing human rights (4)
BOHR - OB(iit) reversed + H(uman) R(ights)

21 Coloured stone that’s become white when removed from casing (4)
OPAL - {g}O PAL{e}

23 Bridge repair, one very often short? (10)
CROSSPATCH - CROSS [bridge] + PATCH [repair] - a short-tempered person

25 Eleven of Italy’s fifty islands — rest over to the west (6)
NAPOLI - L I [fifty | islands] to the east/right of NAP O [rest | over]. Italian football team, topically today

26 Give best after admitting one’s disadvantage (8)
HANDICAP - HAND [give] + CAP [best] "admitting" I

28 French department’s English staff returned to hold party (8)
DORDOGNE - ENG ROD reversed, "holding" DO

29 Extra’s stage farewell (3,3)
LEG BYE - LEG [stage] + BYE [farewell]

DOWN
2 Spare, comparatively ancient, fuel tank (9)
GASHOLDER - GASH [spare] + OLDER [comparatively ancient]. I had never come across "gash" as meaning "spare" before, but apparently it's old naval lingo. Maybe

3 Ray washes trousers and pants (7)
BREATHS - RE [= ray = a drop of golden sun = musical note] "trousered" by BATHS [washes]

4 Letters from abroad: at least twenty two? (3)
XIS - two XIs [elevens] are at least 22.

5 Country fellow’s work in garden including digging at the margins (5)
HODGE - HOE "including" D{iggin}G. An "English rustic or farm labourer"

6 Willing to move: one is keen, let’s get moving! (11)
TELEKINESIS - (I IS KEEN LET'S*)

7 Reserve medicines — spare bottles (7)
ICINESS - "bottled" in {med}ICINES S{pare}

8 Twenty, on leaving Guinea, acquiring horse? (5)
EQUID - {twenty on}E QUID. Isn't a guinea 21 shillings, not 21 quid? Love the idea though Apparently a "quid" also once referred to a guinea! Live and learn!

12 Striking, say outside, you whip and punch (3-8)
EYE-CATCHING - E.G. [say] "outside" YE, CAT, CHIN

16 What is needed to make its dough (3)
TIN - "is" needed a T IN to make "iTs"

17 Flexible management of redesigned coach yard (9)
ADHOCRACY - (COACH YARD*). Lovely word

19 Singer embracing Liberal lord, everyone embraced by Count! (3,4)
ALL TOLD - ALTO "embracing" L, + LD

20 Fired, perhaps, after lying about being led by bishop (7)
BLAZING - LAZING [lying about] led by B(ishop)

22 Standard way of talking up trouble in gallery (5)
PRADO - reversed R.P. [Received Pronunciation] + ADO [trouble]

24 Yellowish ring sent up by fag (5)
OCHRE - take CHORE [fag] and send the O [ring] upwards to the very top

27 Duck removing foot from river (3)
NIL - NIL{e}
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