Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Jerome Gambit OTB

I have the ChessBase online app for my smart phone, giving me access to a large games database. Every once in a while, I can find a new Jerome Gambit or Jerome-ish game.

The following over-the-board clash was initiated by a 15-year old Lithuanian player.

Jelisejevas, Rokas - Diciunas,Vladas
2nd Mikenas Memorial, Taujenai , 06.08.2014

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.0-0 

White opts for a "modern" Jerome Gambit variation, one without 5.Nxe5+. He figures he has done enough sacrificing by drawing Black's King out, and so protects his own. He will take his chances as they come.

The Database has 1128 such games, in which White scores 38%. 

5...d6 6.d3 Bg4 7.h3 Bxf3 8.Qxf3+ Nf6

9.Nc3 Nd4 10.Qd1 Rf8 11.Be3 Ne6 12.Bxc5 Nxc5 13.Ne2 Kg8 14.f4 Qe7 

White has played his thematic f2-f4, but Black has gotten his King to safety by castling-by-hand, and there is little to show, beyond an extra pawn, for White's piece sacrifice.

The gambiteer is going to need some cooperation from his opponent, and in this game it is not forthcoming.

15.f5 Rad8 16.c4 c6 17.b4 Ncd7 18.a4 Nb8 19.Qb3 Kh8

20.Rae1 d5 21.Nc3 dxc4 22.dxc4 Rd4 23.c5 Re8 24.Qb1 h6 25.Rd1 b6 White resigned

A salute to young Rokas for risking it all, over-the-board, in a rated tournament - and better fortune next time!

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