9
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enter image description here

No tricks this time, what you see is what you get. The "around" answers are simply written in the coloured cells clockwise.

Across
1. City on the British Isles, excluding the island on which Douglas is located (7)
5. Following utilisations; extremely exhausted; employed (4)
9. Provided with evidence and reasoning at first, to obtain own conclusion (5)
11. Caribbean specialty ballroom action, originally (5)
12. Muhammad's follower (3)
13. In the end, only one component of "Nordic" (7)
14. ATL #1 in entrances, departures, returns (5)
15. Fathomed not outside? (2,4)
17. Country in Africa; had a woman leader (6)
20. City with harbour by ocean's shore (5)
22. No aim, wandering around; without direction, primarily (7)
25. Greek letter; has a bit of symmetry (3)
26. Produce I love? (5)
27. Sub-Saharan nation lacking in reliable essentials (5)
28. Part of hedgerow (4)
29. Extremists among Germans; held constant power, in a way (7)

Down
1. First in command; head honcho; #1 top executive; leading figure (5)
2. Finely built, with no heavy bottom (5)
3. Metal substance; element discovered by Swedes (7)
6. Very poor country next to one border of Ethiopia (7)
7. Woman papers elevated (5)
8. It's essential to lighting ridgeways (4)
10. By the outskirts of Oceania, Honolulu's surroundings (4)
16. Sport with Hibernian, instead of Caledonian, origin (7)
18. Man-sold nuts (7)
19. One among Dalton, Newton and Tesla? (4)
20. HP, Pantech, Oppo? Communication device, ultimately (5)
21. With zero confinement (4)
23. A matter leading religious authority is promoting? (5)
24. Principally, containers on a ship? (5)

Around
4. Doctor Auziņš's capital (4)
10. Loathing-filled excerpt (4)

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  • $\begingroup$ Hmmm, 16D is ringing a bell...! :) $\endgroup$ – Stiv Mar 24 at 12:48
  • $\begingroup$ @Stiv Heheh, had to use it somewhere! $\endgroup$ – Jafe Mar 24 at 12:49
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ I literally smiled when I caught on to the trick on this one...great puzzle Jafe! $\endgroup$ – Jeremy Dover Mar 24 at 13:23
8
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The completed grid looks like this:

Completed grid

The novelty here is that:

Every single clue is an '&lit', where the whole clue is a literal definition for the answer, but the answer is also clued by wordplay within its wording!

Clue explanations:

Across
1. City on the British Isles, excluding the island on which Douglas is located (7) CHESTER = (-man)CHESTER
5. Following utilisations; extremely exhausted; employed (4) USED = US + E_D
9. Provided with evidence and reasoning at first, to obtain own conclusion (5) INFER = IF (‘provided) around (-ow)N + E(-vidence) + R(-easoning)
11. Caribbean specialty ballroom action, originally (5) RUMBA = RUM + B_ + A_
12. Muhammad's follower (3) ALI = Muhammad Ali + name common among Muslims
13. In the end, only one component of "Nordic" (7) FINNISH = FIN(N_)ISH
14. ATL #1 in entrances, departures, returns (5) DELTA = (ATL + E_ + D_)<
15. Fathomed not outside? (2,4) AT HOME = _ATHOME_
17. Country in Africa; had a woman leader (6) MALAWI = MAL(A+W_)I
20. City with harbour by ocean's shore (5) PORTO = PORT + O_
22. No aim, wandering around; without direction, primarily (7) NOMADIC = NOAIM* around D_ + C (‘around’)
25. Greek letter; has a bit of symmetry (3) PSI = P(S_)I
26. Produce I love? (5) OLIVE = ILOVE*
27. Sub-Saharan nation lacking in reliable essentials (5) NIGER = NIGER(-_ia_)
28. Part of hedgerow (4) EDGE = _EDGE_
29. Extremists among Germans; held constant power, in a way (7) GESTAPO = G_(E)_S + TA(P)O
Down
1. First in command; head honcho; #1 top executive; leading figure (5) CHIEF = C_ + H_ + I (#1) + E_ + F_
2. Finely built, with no heavy bottom (5) ELFIN = FINEL(-y)*
3. Metal substance; element discovered by Swedes (7) TERBIUM = (-me)T(-al) + ERBIUM
6. Very poor country next to one border of Ethiopia (7) SOMALIA = SO (‘very’) + MALI + (-ethiopi)A
7. Woman papers elevated (5) DIANA = (ANA + ID)<
8. It's essential to lighting ridgeways (4) GRID = _G RID_
10. By the outskirts of Oceania, Honolulu's surroundings (4) OAHU = O_A + H_U
16. Sport with Hibernian, instead of Caledonian, origin (7) HURLING = (C to H)URLING
18. Man-sold nuts (7) ALMONDS = MANSOLD*
19. One among Dalton, Newton and Tesla? (4) UNIT = U + N + I + T
20. HP, Pantech, Oppo? Communication device, ultimately (5) PHONE = _P + _H + _O + _N + _E
21. With zero confinement (4) OPEN = O + PEN
23. A matter leading religious authority is promoting? (5) DOGMA = (A + M + GOD)<
24. Principally, containers on a ship? (5) CARGO = C_ + ARGO

Around
4. Doctor Auziņš's capital (4) RIGA = RIG + A_
10. Loathing-filled excerpt (4) OATH = _OATH_

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