Puzzles & games


Bridge | 05 September 2019

Benjaminised Acol, better known as ‘Benji Acol’ — and its variant ‘Reverse Benji’ — is one of the most commonly played bidding systems in Britain. So popular, indeed, that it’s easy to forget that ‘Benji’ was a real person — the Scottish international Albert Benjamin, who died nearly 15 years ago at the age of


Ding an sich

Ding Liren, the Chinese grandmaster, has scored a career best in the Classical time limit section of the Grand Tour in St Louis which concluded late last month. Ding tied for first prize with world champion Magnus Carlsen in the main tournament, and then went on to crush the champion in the quickplay tie-break.  


Home delivery

In Competition No. 3114 you were invited to submit estate agents’ details in the style of a well-known author.   Highlights, in a cracking entry, included Jeremy Carlisle’s Hemingway: ‘Who needs a house? Certainly no real man known to this agency. Cabin by lakeside for sale… A cabin of strong oak-framed construction. The timbers are


2424: Poem V

1A (four words) and 44 (four words) are quotations from the first verse of a poem (in ODQ). Five remaining unclued lights are examples of 1A, while 44 might be a comment on the other four. The poet’s initials will appear upwards in the completed grid and must be shaded.   Across 9    Food for

Crossword solution

to 2421: Tina

Fats WALLER (5), who has been called ‘THE BLACK HOROWITZ’ (40/37/1A), was born in NEW YORK (28) and died in KANSAS CITY (30/36). He was a reluctant ‘guest’ at CAPONE’s (16) 27th birthday party. SLOUCHY (22) and KEROSENE (43) combine to form an anagram of HONEYSUCKLE ROSE, while the title of the puzzle suggests AIN’T


no. 570

Black to play. This is from Carlsen-Ding, St Louis 2019. The black pieces are converging on the white king but he must deal with the threat of Qf8 mate. How did he do this while bringing his own attack to a conclusion? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 10 September or via email