Saturday, September 1, 2012

If It's A Good One

It's time to go back to Philidor1792 for some more 9.Na3 ideas... The following game is a good reminder that it only takes one mistake to lose a game, if it's a "good" one.

Philidor1792 - guest871
Internet online game, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.Qf5+ Kd6 8.d4 

See "A Fan of the Jerome Gambit."

8...Bxd4 9.Na3 c6 10.Bf4 Qf6 11.0-0-0 


Also seen: 11...c5 12.Nb5+ (12.Bxe5+ since 12...Qxe5 13.Nc4+) 12...Ke7 13.Nxd4 (13.Bg5 d5 14.Qf4 Bxb2+ 15.Kb1 Nf7 16.Qc7+ Kf8 17.Qxc5+ Ne7 18.Bxf6 Bxf6) 13...cxd4 14.Bxe5 (14.Bg5 d6 15.Bxf6+ Nxf6 16.Qg5) 14...Qxf5 15.exf5 Nf6 16.Rhe1 Kf7 17.Bd6 Re8 18.Rxe8 Nxe8 19.Rxd4 Nxd6 20.Rxd6 Ke7 21.Rd3 d6 22.g4 Bd7 23.Kd2 Rc8 24.c3 Rc6 25.f4 Kf6 26.Rd5 a6 27.g5+ Ke7 28.Kd3 Rc5 29.Rxc5 dxc5 30.Ke4 Kd6 31.h4 Bc6+ 32.Ke3 Kd5 33.h5 Bd7 34.h6 Bxf5 35.hxg7 Be6 36.f5 Bg8 37.Kf4 Kd6 38.a3 Ke7 39.Ke5 Kf7 40.f6 Kg6 41.Kd6 Kxg5 42.Ke7 Kg6 43.Kf8 Bd5 44.g8Q+ Bxg8 45.Kxg8 Kxf6 46.Kxh7 Ke5 47.Kg6 Ke4 48.Kf6 Kd3 49.Ke6 Kc2 50.Kd5 b6 51.b4 cxb4 52.cxb4 Kb3 (52...b5) 53.b5 axb5 54.Kc6 Ka4 55.Kxb6 Kxa3 56.Kxb5 drawn, Philidor1792 - guest2324, Internet online game, 2012. 

12.exf5 c5 13.Nc4+ Kc7 

Keeping the King in the fray with 13...Kd5 was safer.

14.Nxe5 Bxe5 15.Bxe5+ Kd8 16.Bxg7 Black resigned

Friday, August 31, 2012

Reversing Moves

In my latest Jerome Gambit game, my opponent reversed the 8th and 9th moves of the "His Nibs defense" and still got a good game. My only chance was to vary and confuse him.

It worked.

perrypawnpusher  - rheapennata
blitz, FICS, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.Qf5+ Kd6 8.f4 Nf3+ 

The malicious "His Nibs defense" continues instead 8...Qh4+ and after 9.g3, then 9...Nf3+.

Still, the text ,pve, introducing the so-called  "Norton variation" (see below) is strong, itself.


Probably not as strong as 9.gxf3, which has been played before:  9...Qh4+ 10.Kd1 (10.Ke2 Qf2+ 11.Kd3 Qxf3+ 12.Kc4 b5+ 13.Kxb5 Rb8+ 14.Ka5 Bb4+ 15.Ka4 Qxh1 16.Qe5+ Kc6 17.Qd5+ Kb6 18.Qb5 checkmate, Young,J - Chess "Challenger" 10, Computer game, 1979) 10...Ne7 (10...Qf2 11.Qe5+ Kc6 12.Qd5+ Kb6 13.Qb3+ Ka6 14.Qa4+ Kb6 15.Qb3+ Kc6 16.Qd5+ Kb5 17.Nc3+ Ka6 18.Qc4+ Kb6 19.Qb5 checkmate,  perrypawnpusher - Sir Osis of the Liver, JG3 thematic, Chessworld, 2008) 11.e5+ Kc6 12.Qe4+ Nd5 13.Nc3 Qxf4 14.Qxd5+ Kb6 15.Qb3+ Kc6 16.Qd5+ Kb6 17.Qb3+ Bb4 18.Nd5+ Kb5 19.Nxf4 Black resigned, perrypawnpusher - sjeijk, blitz, FICS, 2011 


Alternatives, new and old:

9...Kc6 10.Qd5+ Kb6 11.Qb3+ Kc6 12.Qxf3 Qf6 13.e5+ Black resigned, perrypawnpusher - igormsp, blitz, FICS, 2011; and

9...c6 10.gxf3 Qe7 11.b4 Bb6 12.Bb2 Kc7 13.Qe5+ Qxe5 14.Bxe5+ d6 15.Bxg7 Bh3+ 16.Ke2 Bg2 17.Rd1 Ne7 18.Bxh8 Ng6 19.d4 Rxh8 20.Kf2 Nxf4 21.c3 Rg8 22.Nd2 Kd7 23.Ke3 Rf8 24.Rg1 Bd8 25.Kf2 Rg8 26.Ke3 Nh3 27.f4 Nxg1 28.Rxg1 Rg4 29.Nf1 Bh3 30.Ng3 Rh4 31.Nf5 Bxf5 32.exf5 Bf6 33.Rg3 Rxh2 34.a4 Rh1 35.a5 Re1+ 36.Kf3 Re7 37.Rh3 c5 38.bxc5 dxc5 39.Rh6 cxd4 40.cxd4 Bxd4 41.f6 Rf7 42.Ke4 Bxf6 and Black won, Jerome,A - Norton,D, Correspondence, 1876.

Probably best was 9...Ne7 10.e5+ Nxe5 11.Qxe5+ Kc6. 


Here 10.g3?, transposing into the "His Nibs" variation, would have been foolish.

10...Ke7 11.Qxc5+ Kd8 

Up until this point, my opponent had been using a good bit of time, as he made his way through the variation. This is a blitz slip, however, probably more reflex than planning.

Instead, 11...Kf7 12.gxf3 Qxf4 13.Ke2 would have left White a pawn up. 

12.Qf8 checkmate

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Further Exploration

Here is another Jerome Gambit exploration by Philidor1792, tackling an annoying defensive variation (for a game, and a discussion by MrJoker, see "Theory From the Thematic Tourney" Part 3 and Part 4), battling with his opponent and prevailing.

Philidor1792 - NN
Casual game, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.f4 d6 

8.fxe5 dxe5 9.Qh3+ Ke7 

9...Kd6 was seen in Yace Paderborn - RevvedUp, 2006 (1-0, 48) and Morin,L-Dumont,F, Montreal, 2011 (0-1, 57). 

10.Qg3 Kf7 11.Qxe5 Qh4+ 

Other choices by Black (all in The Database):

11...Qd6 in Wall,B, - Qi,H,, 2011 (1-0, 14); 
11...b6 in Wall,B - Redom,T,, 2010 (½-½,59); 
11...Bd4 in Fritz 5.32 - Junior 7, The Jeroen Experience, 2003 (0-1, 32)

12.g3 Qe7 13.Qxe7+ 

Or 13.Rf1+ in Colossus - Rybka v1.0 Beta.w32, USA, 2006 (0-1,42).

13...Nxe7 14.c3 Bb6 15.d4 Ke8 

Here we have a typical Jerome Gambit Queenless middlegame/endgame, where Philidor1792 wants to make the most of his "Jerome pawns".

16.Be3 Nc6 17.Nd2 Ne5 18.Kd1 Ng4 19.Ke2 Be6 20.Bf4 Kd7 21.Raf1 Raf8 22.h3 Nf6 23.Kd3 Kc8 24.Re1 Nh5 25.Be5 Rf7 26.Rhf1 Nf6 

White patiently maneuvers and improves the placement of his pieces.

27.g4 Nd7 28.Bg3 Rxf1 29.Rxf1 a6 30.Nc4 Ba7 31.b3 h5 32.Ne3 hxg4 33.hxg4 Bb6 34.Rf3 Nf6 35.g5 Nh5 36.Be5 Kd7 

37.Nf5 Rf8 38.c4 Bxf5 39.exf5 c6 40.Ke4 Rf7 

A slip, but the game remains drawish..

41.Rh3 c5 42.Rxh5 cxd4 43.Bxd4 Bxd4 44.Kxd4 Rxf5 

45.Ke4 Ke6 46.b4 Re5+ 47.Kd4 b6 48.Rh8 Rxg5 49.Rb8 Rg4+ 50.Kc3 Rg3+ 51.Kd4 Rg4+ 52.Kc3 Rg3+ 

Has White reached his goal of an endgame draw with the Jerome Gambit?



White wants more.

This seems to upset Black, who soon settles for less.

53...b5 54.Rb6+ Ke5 55.cxb5 axb5 56.Rxb5+ Kd4 57.Rc5 g5 58.a4 g4 59.a5 Rg2+ 60.Kb3 Rg3+ 61.Ka4 Rg1 62.Kb5 g3 63.a6 Ra1 64.Rg5 Ra3 65.Kb6 Black resigned

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A Fan of the Jerome Gambit

Despite the bad news that his games might sometimes bring (see "Sometimes"), Philidor 1792 is a fan of the Jerome Gambit: he wins with it regularly, and is always willing to try different paths of play. Here is another collection of hard-fought play.

Philidor1792 - guest2324
Internet online game, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.Qf5+ Kd6 8.d4 

8...Bxd4 9.Na3 

Dating from as far back as Jerome,A - Norton,D, correspondence, 1877, and still a good idea.


Two earlier encounters: 

9...Qf6 10.Nb5+ Kc5 11.Nxd4 Kxd4 12.Be3+ Kc4 13.Qh5 Ne7 14.Qe2+ Kb4 15.a4 Qc6 16.Qd2+ Kc4 17.b3 checkmate, Philidor1792-NN, 2012; and

9...c6 10.c3 Qf6 11.cxd4 Qxf5 12.exf5 Nf7 13.Bf4+ Ke7 14.Nc4 d5 15.Ne3 Ngh6 16.g4 g6 17.fxg6 hxg6 18.f3 Bd7 19.Kf2 Raf8 20.Bg3 g5 21.Rae1 Kd8 22.h4 gxh4 23.Bxh4+ Kc8 24.Bf6 Rhg8 25.Kg3 Nd6 26.Be5 Nhf7 27.Bxd6 Nxd6 28.Rh6 Nf7 29.Rh7 Rh8 30.Reh1 Kd8 31.f4 Ke7 32.f5 Kf6 33.Kf4 Rxh7 34.Rxh7 Rh8 35.g5+ Ke7 36.g6 Rxh7 37.gxh7 Kf6 38.Ng4+ Kg7 39.Ne5 Nxe5 40.dxe5 Kxh7 41.e6 Be8 42.Ke5 Kg7 43.f6+ Kf8 44.b4 Bh5 45.a3 Bf3 46.Kd6 Ke8 47.f7+ Kf8 48.e7+ Kxf7 49.Kd7 Bg4+ 50.Kd8 d4 51.e8Q+ Black resigned, Philidor1792-NN, 2012.

10.Nb5 d5

An improvement over three other games:

10...Nc6 11.Nxd4 Nxd4 12.Qc5+ d6 13.Qxd4 Nf6 14.0-0 Re8 15.Bg5 Kf7 16.f4 h6 17.Bh4 Bg4 18.Rae1 a6 19.e5 dxe5 20.Qxd8 Raxd8 21.fxe5 Black lost on time, Philidor1792 - guest324, Internet online game 2012; and

10...d6 11.Qg5+ Ke8 (11...Nf6 12.Nxd4 Kf7 13.f3 Nc6 14.Be3 Nxd4 15.Bxd4 Rf8 16.0-0-0 Kg8 17.h4 h6 18.Qe3 Qe7 19.g4 Be6 20.g5 hxg5 21.hxg5 Nd7 22.f4 Nc5 23.g6 Bg4 24.Qg3 Bxd1 25.Rh8+ Kxh8 26.Qh2+ Qh4 27.Qxh4+ Bh5 28.Qxh5+ Kg8 29.Qh7 checkmate, Philidor1792 - guest206, Internet online game, 2012) 12.Qxg7 Bxf2+ 13.Kxf2 Qf6+ 14.Qxf6 Nxf6 15.Nxc7+ Kd8 16.Nxa8 Rf8 17.Bg5 b6 18.Rhf1 Bb7 19.Kg1 Ned7 20.Rad1 Bxa8 21.Rxd6 Ke7 22.e5 Nxe5 23.Rdxf6 Rxf6 24.Bxf6+ Ke6 25.Bxe5 Kxe5 26.Rf7 Black lost on time, Philidor1792 - guest3422, Internet online game, 2012

11.Qg5+ Nf6 12.Nxd4 Nf7 13.Qe3 dxe4 14.Nb5 Bg4 15.f3

15...Bh5 16.Qc5+ Nd6 17.fxe4 b6 18.Qxc7+ Qd7 19.e5 Nxb5 20.exf6+ gxf6 21.Qxd7+ Kxd7 

White has only a pawn for his sacrificed piece, but he has only begun to fight! It can be discouraging for the "winning" player to face someone who refuses to lose.

22.0-0 Nd4 23.c3 Ne2+ 24.Kf2 Nxc1 25.Raxc1 Rhe8 26.Rc2 Re5 27.Rd2+ Kc6 28.Kg1 f5 29.Rf4 Rae8 30.Rh4 Bg6 31.Rc4+ Rc5 32.Rcd4 

32...Re7 33.Kf2 Rce5 34.Rc4+ Kb7 35.Rcd4 Bh5 36.Kg3 Re4 37.Rd7+ Ka6 38.Rxe7 Rxe7 39.Kf4 Re2 40.Rxe2 Bxe2 41.Kxf5 

41...Kb5 42.Ke4 Kc4 43.Ke3 Bd3 44.Kd2 Bb1 45.b3+ Kd5 46.a3 a5 47.g4 a4 48.bxa4 Kc4 49.Kc1 Be4 50.Kd2 Kb3 51.Ke3 Bb1 

It looks like Black has made some headway, but White is willing to exchange three pawns for one, to liquidate the Queenside. The Kingside will be next.

52.Kd4 Kxa4 53.c4 Kxa3 54.c5 bxc5+ 55.Kxc5 Kb3 56.Kd4 Bc2
57.Ke5 Kc3 58.h4 Kd3 59.g5 Bd1 60.Kf6 Bh5 61.Kg7 Bg6 62.h5 Be4 63.g6 hxg6 64.hxg6 Bxg6 65.Kxg6 Drawn

graphic by Jeff Bucchino, The Wizard of Draws

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

No Way Out

Still unwilling to concede the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+) to the His Nibs Defense (see "Sometimes"), Philidor1792 recently explored a "theoretical novelty" at move 9 in a couple of games, and discovered that it did not lead to escape.

Philidor1792 - computer
Casual game, 2012

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

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.Qf5+ Kd6 8.f4 Qh4+ 


This is a TN, as an alternative to 9.g3 Nf6+ 10.Kd1 or 10.Kf1.


An improvement over 9...Qg4+, when White was able to wrangle a draw with much, much effort, against a human opponent, i.e. 10.Qxg4 Nxg4 11.d4 Bb6 12.Kf3 N4h6 13.Be3 c6 14.c4 Ke7 15.Nc3 Ba5 16.g4 Bxc3 17.bxc3 d6 18.g5 Nf7 19.f5 h6 20.h4 hxg5 21.hxg5 Rxh1 22.Rxh1 Bd7 23.Kf4 b5 24.cxb5 cxb5 25.e5 Bc6 26.Rh7 Kf8 27.g6 Nfh6 28.Kg5 Re8 29.Bf4 Bd5 30.f6 gxf6+ 31.exf6 Re2 32.Bxd6+ Ke8 33.Rxh6 Rg2+ 34.Kh5 Nxh6 35.Kxh6 Bxa2 36.Bb4 Rh2+ 37.Kg7 Rg2 38.Kh6 Rf2 39.Kg7 Rg2 40.Kh6 Bd5 41.Kh7 Rh2+ 42.Kg7 Rf2 43.Bc5 a5 44.Ba3 Rf3 45.Bc5 Rf4 46.Ba3 Rf3 47.Bc5 Rg3 48.Bd6 Rg2 49.Kh6 drawn, Philidor1792 - guest276, Internet online game, 2012.

10.Kd1 Ng6 11.d3 c6 12.Qg4 Kc7 13.Qg3 Qxg3 14.hxg3 d6 

White's "Jerome pawns" are up against two extra Black pieces, which is a bit too much.

15.f5 Ne5 16.Bf4 Ng4 17.Ke2 N8f6 18.Nd2 Re8 19.Kf3 

The King rallies his troops, but the defense is too difficult.

19...g6 20.fxg6 hxg6 21.Raf1 Nh2+ 22.Rxh2 Bg4 checkmate

Monday, August 27, 2012


Having explored the difficult 10.Kd1 variation of the "His Nibs Defense" to the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+) (see "Sailing Off the Edge of the World" and "Sailing Off Again"), Philidor1792 recently tackled the lesser-played 10.Kf1 variation, with equally sober results.

Sometimes a "refuted" opening plays like a refuted opening...

Philidor1792 - computer
Casual game, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.Qf5+ Kd6 8.f4 Qh4+ 9.g3 Nf3+ 

Black's two quirky last moves show that he is either a) familiar the His Nibs Defense, or b) a computer.


Avoiding the d1-h5 diagonal, so deadly in the 10.Kd1 variation.

10...Ne7 11.e5+ Kc6 12.Qe4+ d5 13.exd6+ 

This is an improvement over the reasonable-looking 13.Qxf3, e.g. 13...Bg4 14.Qg2 Qh5 15.Ke1 Nf5 16.Qf1 Nd4 17.Qd3 Be2 18.Qc3 Nf3+ White resigned, Philidor1792 - computer, casual game, 2012

13...Nd5 14.gxh4 Bh3+ 

White gets Black's Queen, but it is a sacrifice, not a blunder. White's King can find no peace.

15.Ke2 Nd4+ 16.Kd3 Rhe8 17.Qxd4 Bf5+ 18.Kc4 b5+ 19.Kb3 Bxd4 20.dxc7 Be6 21.c3 Ne3+ 22.c4 Bxc4+ 23.Kb4 a5+ 24.Ka3 Nc2 checkmate

Sometimes seeking the truth, however courageously, is painful.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

You have been eliminated

Checking out the larger (25 player) of the two Italian Game tournaments that I have been playing in at, I noticed a new icon, the meaning of which appears to be "You have been eliminated". A 4-4 record placed me third in my 5-player group, and probably 11th in a field in which only 10 will move on to the next round (see "Counting").

Still, I was able to score a win with the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+) against my group's top finisher, narvi, to whom I wish the best success.

The 20 player Italian Game tournament, where I finished at the top of my 4-player group with 5-1 (2-1 with the Jerome Gambit) remains. The second round has not yet started.