Friday, May 24, 2013

Yet Another Day in the Life of the Jerome Gambit

I like to use the "day in the life" games to show just how other-worldly the Jerome Gambit can become.

pigsfeet - chessnyc
blitz, FICS, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d3 Bc5 5.Bxf7+

There are over 900 examples of this Jerome Gambit version in The Database.


Black is not interested in the piece, however, at least for now. Already he has exchanged a winning advantage for a losing one. Yawn.


White insists, however, and Black doesn't have to be asked twice.

6...Kxf7 7.b4 Bxf2+

Why should White have all the fun?

8.Kxf2 Rf8 9.Ba3 d6 10.Qb3+ Be6

This "aggressive counter" falls to a known tactic. The game would be roughly even after 10...Ke7.

11.Ng5+ Kg6 12.Nxe6 

White grabs back a piece, and will next win an exchange.

12...Qe7 13.Nxf8+ Rxf8 14.Rf1

Planning to castle-by-hand, White relaxes too soon. He is saved when Black's Knight moves to the left instead of to the right.


Rybka 3 point out that 14...Ng4+ was the way to go, i.e. 15.Ke2 Rxf1 16.Kxf1 Qf6+ 17.Ke2 Qf2+ 18.Kd1 Ne3+ 19.Kc1 Qe1+ 20.Kb2 Qe2+ 21.Kc1 Kg5 22.h3 Qe1+ 23.Kb2 Qf2+ 24.Kc1 b5
Analysis Diagram

when White's pieces are all tied up, and Black will win with a timely ...a5, when his other Knight can enter the game (or simply capture White's Kingside pawns and Queen one of his own). Weird!

15.Kg1 Nd2

As you might expect from the analysis above, Black had a draw here with 15...Rxf1+ 16.Kxf1 Qf6+ 17.Ke1 Qf2+ 18.Kd1 Nxc3+ 19.Nxc3 Nd4 20.Qb2 Qg1+ 21.Kd2 Qf2+ 22.Kd1 Qg1+ etc.

The move in the game looks like a slip, perhaps a hallucination.

16.Nxd2 Rxf1+ 17.Rxf1 Qh4

Here Black resigned, as he has only a pawn for his missing piece. Indeed, White has a forced mate in 6.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Entertaining, Maddeningly Short Video

For an entertaining, maddeningly short video (with tense background music) on a sprightly Blackburn Shilling Jerome Gambit Game, here's the whole story in 23 seconds.

Luckily, the game is available below, as well.

Peter Šoltýs (1863) - Anton Škrivánek (1808)
Žilina, 2012

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Ke6 6.Qh5  Qf6 7.Ng4 g6 8.Qd5+ Black resigned.

(Why am I not surprised to find that Jerome Gambit Gemeinde member DragonTail played the same attack against annina  in 2006?)

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Element of Surprise

For a very nice, instructive video by MatoJelic that combines themes from both the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+) and a no-name opening we have occasionally looked at (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Na5 4.Bxf7+), check out the Scotch Gambit game Dominguez - Keballos, Mexico, 1880.