Friday, November 21, 2008

Cricket And Cryptic Crosswords: Part III

We've talked about bowling and fielding references in crosswords before. Let's take batting next.

cricket-crossword-batting Words for basic batting shots such as block, cut, sweep, pull can also work as common nouns or verbs. When the solution is a cricket term, the surface reading of the clue typically tries to throw you off track by referring to these words as common nouns or verbs. Here's an example:
Times 24070: e.g. New York Times hack is shot (5,3) SQUARE CUT

If cricket is mentioned in the clue, it makes solving much easier – as long as you are aware of cricket strokes. Such as this one:
Cricket stroke on the leg side with vigour (2,5)

The ways in which batsmen can get out also feature in clues. The most common use is as cryptic abbreviations: caught=C and bowled=B are frequently used for clueing short sections of the

ET 3776: At one time is taken in after being caught short (7) C ONC{IS}E
THC 2637: Making every allowance for amateur bowled in international match (2,4) A,T {B}EST

Here's a list of other cricket-related substitutions that you might have to make when solving crosswords.
Four, Six = Boundary
Eleven = Team
Player = Man
Wicket = W
Run = R
Duck = O
Match = TEST, ODI 

For crossword enthusiasts who are not into cricket, it may be worthwhile to get acquainted with the basic terminology. Look up Wikipedia:

Solve These

Try solving these clues with cricket references, from the The Hindu Crossword archives:
Last batsman in, perhaps, one to finish dog? (4-5)
Successful batsman caught — and touchier about it (6)
Become exhausted and so lose the wicket (3,3)

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