The following game is another one of those "day in the life" kind of things, as there are opening issues, middle game issues, endgame issues, time error issues... And yet, somehow, the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+) player comes out ahead again.
Does he play the Jerome because he is lucky, or is he lucky because he plays the Jerome?
MrBizkit - joelvzg
3 0 blitz, Chess.com, 2020
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+
7.Qd5+ Ke8 8.Qxc5 N8e7 9.d4
White builds his pawn center while cutting off his Queen's retreat to e3.
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9.Qe3 Rf8 10.d4 Kf7 11.O-O Kg8 12.Nc3 Nc6 13.d5 Nce5 14.Nb5 a6 15.Na3 b5 16.b3 b4 17.Nb1 a5 18.Nd2 d6 19.Nc4 Ba6 20.Nxe5 Nxe5 21.f4 Bxf1 22.fxe5 Ba6 23.c4 Rf1+ 24.Kxf1 Black resigned, MrBizkit - Blessed1111, 3 0 blitz, Chess.com, 2020;
9.d3 b6 10.Qc4 Bb7 11.Bg5 Rf8 12.O-O h6 13.Bh4 Qc8 14.Bg3 c5 15.Nc3 Nc6 16.Nd5 Kd8 17.e5 Ncxe5 18.Bxe5 Nxe5 19.Qe4 Qc6 20.Qxe5 Kc8 21.Ne7+ Kd8 22.Nxc6+ Bxc6 23.Rfe1 Kc8 24.Qe7 Kb7 25.Qxg7 Rg8 26.Qe7 Rxg2+ 27.Kf1 Rxh2 28.Re3 Rh1+ 29.Ke2 Ka6 30.Rf3 d5 31.Kd2 Re8 32.Rf6 Rxe7 33.Rxc6 White won on time, ianfencer - Schipio, 1 0 bullet, lichess.org, 2020; and
9.O-O b6 10.Qc3 Rg8 11.d3 Bb7 12.Bg5 d6 13.f4 Qd7 14.Bxe7 Qxe7 15.Nd2 Kd7 16.Qb3 Rad8 17.a4 Kc8 18.Nc4 Kb8 19.a5 Qh4 20.g3 Qf6 21.axb6 cxb6 22.Qa3 Kc7 23.Qxa7 Ra8 24.Qxb6+ Kd7 25.Qxb7+ Ke6 26.Rxa8 Rxa8 27.Qxa8 h5 28.Qc8+ Kf7 29.Qd7+ Kg8 30.Nxd6 Kh7 31.Ne8 Qf8 32.Nxg7 Qxg7 33.Qxg7+ Kxg7 34.b4 Ne7 35.b5 Kf6 36.b6 Nc6 37.b7 Ke7 38.Rb1 Ke6 39.b8=Q Nxb8 40.Rxb8 Black resigned, soraneptune - paketash, 3 0 blitz, Chess.com, 2020.
9...b6 10.Qc3 Bb7 11.Qf3 Rf8 12.Qg4 d5
Black's development is strong, keeping White's Queen over-worked (a basic critique of the Jerome Gambit is Her Majesty's wandering). His King is still in the center, however - and anything can happen in a 3-minute game.
White needs to be ready to make that "anything" happen.
13.O-O dxe4 14.Nc3 Qxd4 15.Be3 Qf6 16.Rad1 Rd8 17.Nb5 Kf7 18.Bg5
White has sacrificed a couple more pawns, and his pieces are swarming, just as Black tries to castle-by-hand. What would be more natural than to offer to exchange Queens, to relieve the pressure? So Black errs...
18...Qf5 19.Qxf5+ Nxf5 20.Bxd8 Kg8
Black's King is now safe, but he is down the exchange. He is not troubled, and pursues active play.
21.Bg5 h6 22.Bd8 e3
Scary, especially if time is running short. Komodo 10 has other preferences, but this is a good "make my opponent think" move when the clock limits how deep analysis can go.
White could have captured the pawn with 23.fxe3, as the fork of the Rooks is an illusion - 23...Nxe3 24.Rxf8+ exchanges off one of the targets.
The game remains messy.
23...e2 24.Bd6 Nxd6 25.Nxd6 Ba6 26.c4 exf1=Q+ 27.Rxf1 Rf6 28.Ne4 Re6
Things have changed. We are back to White having 2 pawns for a piece. In master vs master games, the advantage is often with the side with the extra piece, but in club games the pawns often give chances - although, in this case, with one extra pawn on the Kingside and one on the Queenside, there is a lot of work ahead.
29.Re1 Rc6 30.b3 Ne5 31.f4 Nd3 32.Rd1
Offering a pawn for active Rook play, but Black is not interested - he prefers to trap his Knight (time trouble, no doubt).
Instead, 33.Rd2 would trap the Knight, forcing 33...Nxc4 34.bxc4 Rxc4.
33...Bc8 34.Rd8+ Kh7 35.Re8
Still possible was 35.Rd2.
A slip - followed by one by White - but the time pressure was too much.
36.Re7 Bh3 37.g3 Nd3 38.f5 Re6 39.Nf6+
Marvellous. Actually, any move wins, because here White won on time.