Their 1st XI by Ozzie

Their 1st XI are shy: after each has emerged and signed on, they hide in bars. From the opening stand to the closing partnership they cross the field, though, as cricket is not their game, the batting order is irregular. Each clue comprises a number of non-overlapping clues in entry order. As every part of the field is covered twice, clued grid entries of one letter have, and those of two letters may have, only one indication. The solver, as Captain, must enter bars, having first arranged the field so that it is symmetrical from both ends, going for length where there is a choice, and regarding runs of fewer than three as singles. To ensure a unique solution, only one clued word survives in the completed diagram.

The senior umpire is Chambers (2003), which includes: (clued entries) three abbreviations, and a Latin word (in etymology); (barred grid) two prefixes, a capitalized headword, and a woman's first name. It does not include: (clued entries) the obsolete variant spelling of a three-letter word in 3B (in OED), the European spelling of a woman's first name in 6F, a familiar European structure, and a portmanteau word; (barred grid) a three-letter word in 12B (also in OED). For each clue, the ordered pair in parenthesis gives the number of words of three or more letters, then that of fewer than three (3+ = 3 or more). Ignore punctuation and diacritical marks.


1. A ruminant with head down makes grass short and thick. Settle improperly, smoke, and dry tears when upset. Expressing hesitation is a bit maddening in practice (3+;1)
2. You seldom will have treat: see Pinter in play, A Matter of Wings; also make note of Ohio, State of the Commonwealth, and Women are … (3+;2)
3. Leather straps raised? Not even allowed! Handwriting's shortly adopted. Teacher (Head) marks grades, noting differences in form given teacher's handwritten
imposition? (2;2)
4. Amateur boasted those racing amateurs (not half!) will accept nothing - lots of money if, as they say, unknown, all old (2;3+)
5. See Hutton add 4 and 6 in fast time, a joint effort, opener enters direct for testimonial, Hutton's final (2;1)
6. Under Gen. Oscar (Retired) mess grin and call woman foreign - respect's rejected. Base raid's disastrous - our base? (3+;0)
7. Almost without water? In practice that's discomfort. I eat the sun, or a hunger consumes me: that is sun's appeal, initially. In Perth, to lengthen a religious image's not on: Wizard of Oz shortened a priest! (3+;0)
8. Deuterium: a mineral that is ex bits of niobate, erbium, titanate, and uranium compounded. Open ground for endless metal, tritium. Science backs habitual responses (3+;1)
9. Force supposed to yodel off pitch to incite a fight? Shame! Enemy sounded great (3+;1)
10. 'Concerning time before, backward-looking' is an article of theirs. Man, perhaps, forged ring with Vulcan - dumb adult (3+;1)
11. In the seal's place, seals couple at last: a short swim to France and back; warm, at home in the blue, half frisky, a little randy (2;3+)
12. Weight's right: pick Good Fortune (by Carat, out of Archil Stuff) or Celsius (by Popular, out of Quintic); drop Inuit, Pell-Mell, and Silk (3+;1)
13. Perhaps small section of pop article - 'Without sin is affliction' - is worldly. Qualifying Jabberwock-slayer's thought to be gruff - is he content? (3+;0)


1. My lot's essentially thine: unideal, unhappy, otherwise sourced. Behead Caesar, perhaps, before Caesar's wife; behead failure; behead (3+;0)
2. Stopping the rot, it needs space to develop, space in the newspapers of theirs, in marine returns, finding mosquitoes - serve food without one (2;2)
3. Plaster, plaster, anyhow - slap away with doubled energy? Unbuyable, using new currency of theirs and old currency of ours: 400-year-old egg. Note that old king of theirs has rest disturbed by revel (3+;0)
4. Senor: married, to exist as they do in a basic unit without wife will harm, is their estate; you need program to raise awareness (3+;1)
5. Insignificant person in France, 14½? Not a lot of money's in small branches: dam guard! Note: sword hides covered frame (3+;0)
6. Feeling things before reflecting, old Queen is embraced - a bird, they say, you and I left Queen (2;2)
7. Fancy flier raised in environs of Hong Kong strange lives in adult development - um - stranger (2;0)
8. Abstaining, last to bat twice crosses batter's line, they say, holding blade right instead of in tight grip (2;2)
9. Behold without opening eye: behold with opening of eye. Like a lot of Scotland, we are where adults may learn their Bridge up North often playing (3+;1, last clued, two words)
10. Jolly short lives made by them hard, indeed! - the lot of bureaucrats, extremely cautious, aged. What they used to say? (1;3+)
11. Beastly King (50, out) charged part of cricket team's upset to a big hit to boundary. King: first of innings, a duck. One something marginalized is King with his Edwardian style? (3+;3+)
12. The measure of Little Women: one quarter Welsh, another quarter Semite, one quarter of Russ, one British. Caramel's topping: something made from glue, it could be clingy, a sufficient quantity (2;3+)
13. Line surveyed masters and slave owners facing Republican president carrying Democrat leader? Enthusiasm blazes - take part building memorial to them; start 'Hail to the Chief' (3+;0)

To enter this competition send your solution, in list format, to me at before the 1st November. The first two correct entries  picked will win a copy of Chambers Book of Azed Crosswords which have been donated by the publishers.