Friday, March 1, 2013

And then what...?

As a therapist in my "day job" I often have the opportunity to help my clients expand their understanding of consequences of behaviors by asking them to look further: "And then what...?"

In the following game Black does a good job of defusing the primar threat behind White's 6th move, but he then becomes lax at just about the time he should have asked himself "And then what...?"

Wall,B - Guest1459913, 2013

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

5...Kxf7 6.Qe2 

A quiet move that you can find in a number of Bill's Jerome Gambit games.


Dodging the misfortunes of 6...h6 7.Qc4+ in Wall,B - DarkKnight, Cocoa Beach, FL 2012 (1-0, 23); 6...Rf8 7.Qc4+ in Wall,B - Roberts,C,, 2010 (1-0, 17), Wall,B - Hamilton,E, FICS, 2011 (1-0, 22) and Wall,B - NFNZ, FICS, 2011 (1-0, 15). 

An alternate was 6...d5 as in the rare Wall,B - Samvazpr,, 2010 (0-1, 25) 

7.Qc4+ Be6? 

You can almost read Black's mind: I took care of that move with 6...d6. Now I strike back by attacking the Queen with my Bishop!


Oh, well, yes, there is that...

8...Kg6 9.Nxe6 Qd7 


Threatening 11.f5+ Kf7 12.Nxc5+, winning the Queen.

10...h6 11.fxe5 Nxe5 12.Nxc5 Nxc4 13.Nxd7 Nxd7 14.d3 Nce5 15.0-0 c6 

Players like myself (and perhaps Guest1459913) are often relieved, if not downright hopeful, when we find ourselves facing a strong player like Bill, being "only" a pawn down - with Queens off of the board, to boot.

This is usually an error in thinking: strong players can wield that extra pawn the way ordinary players wield an extra piece.

16.h4 Rhf8 17.Bd2 Kh5 18.Ne2 Kxh4 19.Nd4 g5 20.Nf5+ Kh5 21.Nxd6 b6 

In case anyone is paying attention, White now has a protected passed pawn.

22.d4 Ng4 23.Nf5 Kg6? 24.Ne7+ Kh5 


This wins another pawn, although Bill points out that 25.Rf3! was stronger.

25...Ndf6 26.Bb4 Rfc8 27.Ne7 Rxc2? 28.Rf3

Threatening 29.Rh3 mate 

28...Ne3 29.Rxe3 Rxb2 30.Rh3+ Kg4 31.Rf1 Nxe4 32.Nd5 Re2 33.Ne3+ Rxe3 34.Rxe3 Ng3 35.Rff3 Nh5 36.Bd6 Rd8 37.Re4+ Nf4 38.Bxf4 Black resigned

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Fish Fry

I just played my first blitz Jerome Gambit in a few months, and am again amazed that it seems the more I study the opening (to prepare these posts) the worse my chess play seems to get. (Detractors can laugh here.) Having staggered through a blunder-fest to reach a R+P vs R+2Ps endgame which I drew as time was running out on both myself and my opponent (the game has been discretely inserted into The Database), I again wondered if I finally needed to take up playing the Catalan...

Nah. Where's the fun in that?

Monday, February 25, 2013

No Escape

If a defender decided not to take on Philidor1792 in his favorite Italian Four Knights Jerome Gambit variation, that would make a lot of sense - but it would not be a guarantee of success. Sometimes, there is no escape.

Philidor1792 - guest2723
Internet online game, 2013

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

5...Kxf7 6.Nxe5+ Nxe5 7.d4 Bxd4

Passing on the 7...Bd6 variation which he played earlier

8.Qxd4 Qe7 9.Bg5 Nc6 10.Qd3 d6 11.0-0-0 Be6 

White has a pawn for his sacrificed piece, but his Queenside castling adds a dynamism to the game.

12.f4 h6 13.Bh4 Bg4 14.Rde1 Rad8

Black plans to forestall e4-e5, but trouble arrives from another direction.

15.Nd5 Qe6 16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.h3 Bh5 18.g4 Bxg4 19.hxg4 Qxg4

Under pressure, Black returns a piece for a couple of pawns, but his position contains danger for his King.

20.Rhg1 Qe6 21.e5 dxe5 22.Qg6+ Kf8 23.Qg7+ Black resigned