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English definition of “if/when it comes to the crunch”

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if/when it comes to the crunch

UK if/when a situation becomes extremely serious and a decision must be made: If it comes to the crunch and you and your husband do split up, you can always stay with us.
(Definition of if/when it comes to the crunch from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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