Saturday, June 23, 2012

On The Other Hand

Following up on yesterday's game I discovered the following one. 

I can only assume that "something else" was going on, off-the-board.

karleinkarl - Colod
blitz, FICS, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Na5 4.Bxf7+ White Resigned

Friday, June 22, 2012

A New Mate

As if Black did not have enough problems when he plays the 3...Na5 "no name" defense, in the following game White introduces a new way to execute the second player.

Yreval - egoteamo
blitz, FICS, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Na5 

Asking for trouble. Yreval is happy to oblige.

4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Ke8 6.Qh5+ Ke7 

7.Qf7+ Kd6 8.d4 c6 

Now, a dozen games in The Database have the checkmate 9.Nc4+ Nxc4 10.Bf4+ Ne5 11.Bxe5#.

Instead Yreval goes his own way.

9.Bf4 Kc7 10.Nc4+ Bd6 11.Bxd6 checkmate

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Beware the Jerome Gambit!

Well, Okay, maybe that title is a bit over-done...

How about: Do Not Underestimate the Jerome Gambit ?

Or: Laugh At Your Own Risk.

perrypawnpusher (1798) - narvi (1957)
Italian Game - Round 1,, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 

I am generally happy when my opponent plays this line, as it usually means that he is working things out over-the-board. It also gives me the opportunity to grab his annoying dark-squared Bishop, and set up play with the 2 "Jerome pawns" against his extra piece.

7.Qd5+ Ke8 8.Qxc5 d6 9.Qe3 Nf6 

10.0-0 Ng4

This move indicates more than a wish to harass the Queen. Black plans to exchange Queens, stifling any of White's ideas for a quick attack. This is one downside of the 6...Ng6 line.


As we have seen before, 11.Qe2 is a surprisingly quick route to trouble for White, as in mrjoker - weiran, ICC, 2008.


I have faced 11...h6 in perrypawnpusher - lorecai, blitz, FICS, 2011 (1-0, 14); 11...h5 in perrypawnpusher - Riversider, blitz, FICS, 2010 (1-0, 18); and 11...Rf8 in perrypawnpusher - jgknight, blitz, FICS, 2011 (1/2-1/2, 49); and only the last move gave me trouble.

12.Qxh4 Nxh4 


This may be a tiny bit better than 13.d4. For that matter, 13.Nc3 may be just as good as the text. Of course, transpositions can occur, to.


This looks like the beginning of castling-by-hand, but Black eventually opts to move his King toward the Queenside.

Bill Wall, who has played the Jerome Gambit many times, successfully, has reminded me on more than one occasion that although Alonzo Wheeler Jerome's creation has its refutations, not many of the people who defend against it actually know them. At the very least, it costs time on the clock to suss them out.


It is probably a tossup as to whether 14.f5 or 14.Nc3 are better.

14...Ng6 15.Nc3 c6 

White's plan is to advance his "Jerome pawns" and make some kind of mischief. At the same time, he has to be aware that one of Black's defensive ideas is to return the extra piece for two pawns.

Black seems unsure about taking a decisive step, and puts his moves together as necessary. 

16.Bd2 Kd8 17.f5 Ne7 18.h3 Ne5 19.g4 

White feints at the Kingside, but I mostly wanted to secure the pawn at f5 before advancing the e-pawn.

19...Kc7 20.Bg5 Kd8

Complications. Black wants his Rook on the f-file to restrain White's f-pawn. At the same time, he needs to protect his Knight at e7; and putting the Rook at f7 would allow White to drive the Knight at e5 to the Queenside with d4. Still, events that follow suggest that 20...Ng8 might have been more in line with what Black hoped for.

21.d4 Nf7 22.Bf4 


Black plans to put his Bishop at a6, and kick White's Knight with b7-b5-b4. This struck me as a bit odd, but my opponent was rated a good bit more than me, so what did I know? 

Rybka's suggestion after the game isn't any more dynamic: 22...g6 23.Rae1 b6 24.Rf3 h5 25.f6 Ng8 26.g5 Re8 27.Rfe3 Bd7 28.Kg2 with an even position. 

23.e5 dxe5 24.dxe5 b5 

After the game Rybka suggested that Black could keep White's advantage small by sacrificing the exchange: 24...Nxf5 25.gxf5 Bxf5 26.e6 Bxe6 27.Rad1+ Ke7 28.Be3 Ke8 29.Bc5 b6 30.Bxf8 Kxf8.

I'm pretty sure that neither my opponent nor I were thinking along those lines!

25.e6 Nh8 

White's advantage in development has to be decisive here. It is almost as if he sacrificed a piece to get to this position. Oh, wait - he did!

26.Rad1+ Ke8 27.Bc7 Ba6

Black should be thinking about returning a piece for a couple of pawns, but the risk is that White's remaining "extra" pawn is liable to be advanced and dangerous.


I had looked at the stronger 28.Rd7 Nd5 29.Nxd5 cxd5 but had only considered the mundane follow-up, 30.Rxd5, whereas 30.Rxg7 would have created serious threats from the advancing e- and f-pawns. 

28...Nd5 29.Nxd5 cxd5 30.Rxd5 b4 31.Rfd1 g6 

Black has chased away White's Rook from f1, and has pressure on the white pawn at f5, but White's development decides the game.

32.Rd8+ Rxd8

White sets his e-pawn up to Queen after 32...Ke7 33.R1d7+ Kf6 34.g5+!? (34.e7 mops up after 34...Re8 35.Rxa8 Rxa8 36.Rd8 Kxe7 37.Rxa8 Nf7 38.Rxa6 but without the pawn Queening) 34...Kxg5 35.e7

33.Rxd8+ Ke7 34.Bd6+  After this shot, Black resigned

I was really happy to find the Bishop move, the Rook "sacrifice" is a sham: 34...Kxd8 35.e7+ and the pawn will both capture the Rook and promote to a Queen.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Sharp and Pleasant Turn

My current Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+) game (mentioned in "Through To Two"in the second of two Italian Game tournaments has taken a sharp and pleasant turn, with my opponent resigning at move 34. 

That leaves me with a 2-1 record with the Jerome in the first tournament, with further chances to play the opening as I advance to the second round. Now I am 1-0 with the Jerome in the second tournament, where I will have the White pieces in one more game (but where I am not likely to advance to the next round).  

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


I stumbled across the Jerome Gambit Forum at Forum Jar and don't know what to make of it.

You might want to avoid it altogether. 

While the site boasts "Congratulations! You have found the Jerome Gambit Forum on Forum Jar. This forum is a place where people who are interested in Jerome Gambit come together and discuss about Jerome Gambit" there are, in fact, no posts.

Furthermore, the site also warns "Alert! Please do not buy anything or pay anyone on this forum. Scammers have been reported on our forum. Please also do not go to any links posted on here. We have been reported about links to websites that contain viruses. Thank you"

If you have something to say about the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+), you can always send it here!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Kick Me

It might be that, despite his name, Dekapitator was on his way to playing a quiet Giuoco Piano game, when his opponent's 4...Na5 suddenly screamed out "Kick Me!" Suddenly, the "Jerome treatment" seemed like a good idea.

Dekapitator - nonsonocapace
blitz, FICS, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.0-0 Na5 

We have seen that this offside Knight is not very good when played on the third move (see "Puzzling" for a recent example), and it is just about as strong here.


Objectively, White does best with 5.Nxe5, but the Jerome treatment of the position is more fun.

5...Kxf7 6.Nxe5+ Ke6 

Brave and bold, but Rybka prefers 6...Kf8 (there are two games in The Database with this move, White scoring 2-0) and then gives 7.d4 Bb6 8.Nf3 Qe8 9.Nc3 d6 10.h3 Qg6 11.Nh4 Qf6 12.Nf3 Qg6 repeating the position for a draw!?

Not surprisingly, 6...Ke8, allowing White's Queen to go to h5 with check, lost in its one appearance in The Database.


A bit stronger is 7.Qg4+ Kxe5 8.d4+, but White may have been finding his way here.


After this, it is "find the checkmate" for White.

8.Qg4+ Ke7 9.Bg5+ 

Or 9.Qxg7+ Ke8 10.Qf7# 



Building his position. With 10.Bxf6+ White would win Black's Queen, as anything other than 10...Ke8 would lead to mate.


Missing a chance to play 10...Kf8 and shore up his position. Now White crashes through.

11.fxe5 Kf7 12.exf6 .gxf6 13.Rxf6+ Qxf6 14.Bxf6 Kxf6 15.Nc3 b6 16.Rf1+ Ke7 17.Qg7+ Kd6 18.Rf6 checkmate

Sunday, June 17, 2012


I was feeling a bit cranky when I began to put this post together, so I decided upon a Jerome Gambit game that features a "TL", that is, a "TN" (theoretical novelty) that turned out to be a "theoretical lemon" as White was rudely overrun by his opponent.

Tadayoshi - AMITAF
blitz, FICS, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bc4 Bc5 5.Bxf7+ 

The Italian Four Knights Jerome Gambit.

5...Kxf7 6.Nxe5+ Nxe5 7.d4 d6 8.f4 

Black's last move shows an indifference as to which piece White captures. (White should choose one.)

White, in turn, leaves his capture options open and adds another "Jerome pawn" to the mix. This is risky, as Black demonstrates that pawn advances can leave weaknesses in their wake.

8...Bg4 9.Qd2 Nc4 10.Qd3 d5 


Going after the annoying Knight, and perhaps even anticipating his 13th move, but needed to try the straight-forward 11.dxc5, even though it would still leave him worse.


A deadly pin.

12.bxc4 Nxe4 13.Bb2 Qh4+ 14.g3 Qh3 

15.Rf1 Rhe8 16.Qxe4 Rxe4+ 17.Kd2 Rxd4+ 18.Kc1 Qxf1+ White resigned