Crossword Genius

Grub up — fish (no starter) (4)

Ross

I believe the answer is:

rout

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Here is my best explanation:

'grub up' is the definition.
(both can mean to search for something in earth)

'fish no starter' is the wordplay.
'fish' becomes 'trout' (trout is a kind of fish).
'no starter' means to remove the first letter.
'trout' with its initial letter taken off is 'ROUT'.

Ross

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This clue was last seen in The Guardian

(Other definitions for rout that I've seen before include "Inflict heavy defeat on", "clobber", "Whitewash", "Act like a pig", "Put to flight on tour", "Total(ly) defeat", "Disorderly retreat", "Big defeat", "Debacle" and "Overwhelming victory".)

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