Solution: Under the Shade

Written by aki and Wilson

In this puzzle, we are faced with a series of cryptic clues (definitions underlined below). The first step is to solve them. However, some of the definitions do not seem to match the answers. After some searching, however, we might realize that these are all terms used in golf, and the definitions given are the golf definitions of the terms.

As we solve the clues, we might notice that the first enumeration in the parentheses is the length of the answer. Naturally, we should then try to index into the answers by the second number.

Number (WPGA Edition) Clue Construction Answer Cluephrase extraction Player last name Extracted answer
44 Miss Olfactory's use (5; 1) Double def. (olfactory sense is used for smell) WHIFF W PAK A
37 In Burundi, voters' turf cut out (5; 4) Burundi, voters' DIVOT O MALLON N
1 Raphael leads in originator's heavenly balls? (10; 5) RA (Raphael leads) + IN + MAKERS (originator's) RAINMAKERS M HANSON S
15 Resting position of loser browser (3; 3) L (loser) + IE (browser) LIE E RAWLS W
32 Psychologist with the French thicket of trees (6; 3) JUNG (psychologist) + LE (the in French) JUNGLE N BRADLEY E
41 Oar said “it went slightly too high” (5; 1) SCULL (oar) homonym (said) SKULL S ROBBINS R
21 Hit “Gently” out without lead single being in platinum (4; 1) OUT (out without lead single) inside (being in) PT (platinum) PUTT P WHITWORTH I
49 By hugging Shrek, right lost one too many times (5; 3) BY around (hugging) OG[R (right lost)]E (Shrek) BOGEY G SORENSTAM S
55 Prince May reportedly ends official drive gone too long (7; 1) AIR (prince) + MAI (May homonym (reportedly)) + L (ends official) AIRMAIL A NORDQVIST Q
34 Bordering on dropping in shark tanker (5; 1) Double def. (Mark Cuban is a Shark Tank investor) CUBAN C TURNER U
28 To get orientated, he started spinning wand by the side (4, 5; 1) H (he started) + (spinning) rot(WAND) + EDGE (the side) HAND WEDGE H STEPHENSON E
18 District sent over curved trajectory (4; 3) rev(WARD (district)) (sent over) DRAW A AHERN E
57 Wriggle stove barely off ground (4, 6; 4) WORM (wriggle) + BURNER (stove) WORM BURNER M TSENG N
14 Stick one might punch (3; 1) Double def. (a PIN can be punched into, say, an ATM) PIN P POST O
22 It is another opportunity – consider my generative adversarial network (8; 3) MULL (consider) + I (my) + GAN (generative adversarial network) MULLIGAN L BURFEINDT F
53 Unhinged woman outfitted in snowy tops took eight shots (7; 6) (Unhinged) anag(WOMAN) (outfitted) in SN (snowy tops) SNOWMAN A PETTERSEN T
6 Prohibit topless skies bouncing off trees (7; 7) BAR (prohibit) + KIES (topless skies) BARKIES S WRIGHT H
16 Lithium in Utah post office box almost fell in (3, 3; 6) LI (lithium) + anag(UT (Utah) + PO (post office)) (box) LIP OUT T ENGLEHORN E
65 Outperformed average even in Buckhead (5; 1) in Buckhead NUKED N GREEN G
64 Green vehicle: our dog (6; 2) CAR (vehicle) + PET (our dog) CARPET A PARK R
36 Nine inner changes before Oman ends (7; 5) HANG (inner changes) + MAN (Oman ends) HANGMAN M DANIEL E
62 End of soundtrack in artificial intelligence film “Bad Player” (6; 5) ACK (end of soundtrack) in HER (AI film) HACKER E HENDERSON E
25 “I Spy” played with off touch (4; 4) anag(I SPY) (played) YIPS S CAPIONI N

Doing so, we obtain the cluephrase WOMEN'S PGA CHAMP LAST NAMES. At this point, there is one element of the puzzle not used yet – the numbers associated with each clue. Interpreting these as the WPGA editions we should take the champions from, we can match every clue to the last name of a WPGA Champion. This interpretation is further confirmed by the fact that the number of words in each clue is equal to the number of letters in the last name.

Once matched, we notice one more thing about each of these clues, that is, every one of them has exactly one “golf ball” – that is, a word that starts with the letter “O”! Extracting the letter from each name corresponding to the position of the golf ball in each cryptic clue yields the final phrase, ANSWER IS QUEEN OF THE GREEN.

Author's Notes

The incredible amount of sports jargon is such fertile ground to write a puzzle on! It was our first attempt at writing a cryptics puzzle, so we hope it did not turn out too terribly. As it turns out, during testsolving we were informed by our testsolvers that this was a really bad choice for our first cryptics puzzle, due to the constraints on the clue wordings. We also hope the cryptics ended up being at least mostly fair, even if they were worded somewhat strangely.

We were also incredibly lucky while writing this puzzle that there was a WPGA Champion whose last name contains a “Q”, which was needed for the answer for this puzzle.

We had many rejected clues from testsolving, but our favorite (and most unfair, in our opinion!) rejected clue has to be:

“Gently tap toffee over caramel without stopping”, said Galactic?PUTT [PU(FLAN → T)TU]