Puzzles & games


Bridge | 6 February 2014

January ended for me with the annual Icelandic Bridge Festival in Reykjavik. There may be a better tournament but I haven’t played it. This year it attracted a record number of entries for the Pairs and Teams — and a record number of Brits. The star for me was the divine Mrs P, playing with


Lions’ den

Daniel Johnson, the distinguished editor of Standpoint magazine, can be bracketed with Tim Congdon and Dominic Lawson, as having had the potential to become a chess master. All three chose other courses in economics, journalism and politics. Daniel, in particular, has faced world-class opposition in simultaneous displays, having drawn with Garry Kasparov and defeated the


Dear diary

In Competition 2833 you were invited to submit an extract from the adolescent diary of a well-known public figure, living or dead. There wasn’t much between you this week and it was tough boiling the entry down to just six. Those who narrowly lost out include Pervez Rizvi, P.C. Parrish, Mark Shelton and John Whitworth,


2148: Eighth of February

Unclued lights (including two of two words and an accent to be ignored) can be expressed in such a way as to form a thematic set. Elsewhere, ignore an apostrophe.   Across   1    Solitary criminal canned opium (11) 11    Vintage malt liquor needing special can in perfect condition (6) 13    Dramatist from Italy a

Crossword solution

to 2145: Two in a row

Each pair consists of two in a ‘row’ in a variety of meanings. PURL (14) & PLAIN (25) (line of stitches), MERCUTIO (17) & TYBALT (40) (brawl), ROT/TEN (24/27) (Rotten Row) and BOW (29) & STROKE (32) (journey in rowing boat).   First prize S.J.J. Tiffin, Cockermouth, Cumbria Runners-up Stephen Daneff, London SW18; E.A. Wright,


No. 300

White to play. This is from Johnson-Finch, Marlow 1974. White is building up a strong attack on the kingside and his next move was a brilliant way to create insurmountable threats. What did he play? Answers to me by Tuesday 11 February or via email to victoria@spectator.co.uk or by fax on 020 7681 3773. The