Saturday, August 23, 2014

Another RHP Jerome Gambit Tournament - Game 1

Instead of grabbing the second sacrificed piece, Black plays a defensive system - but he plays it too defensively. Hanging on to material, instead of returning it at the right moment, can spell disaster, even (especially) against the Jerome Gambit.

jankrb (2055) - musirpha (1874)
Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, 2013

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Kf8 


Experimental are 6.Nd3, from Wall,B - Tim93612, 2010 (1-0, 36) and 6.0-0 from billwall - DeDrijver,, 2012 (1-0, 20).

Instead, 6.Qh5 is the rowdy Banks Variation, from Banks,P - Rees,M, Halesowen v Lucas BS, 2003 (1-0, 45). It is interesting to compare this line with the Paulsen Variation, where Black has placed his King on e7, instead of f8, e.g. the recently-discussed jankrb - Red House, Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, RedHotPawn, 2013.


As noted as recently as in the game jankrb - Red House, Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, RedHotPawn, 2013, the preferred capture is 6...dxc6, preventing 7.d4. The Database has many examples.

7.d4 Be7

A bit better was 7...Bb6 as in perrypawnpusher - hdig, blitz, FICS, 2007 (1-0, 17) and perrypawnpusher - mika76,, 2008 (1-0, 17). 


Certainly an improvment over 8.f4 of perrypawnpusher - badhorsey, blitz, FICS, 2011 (1-0, 26). 

8...Ke8 9.0-0 d6 10.c4 Nf6 11.e5 dxe5 12.dxe5 Ng8

This retreat spells trouble.

13.Rd1 Bd7 14.e6 Nf6 15.exd7+ Kf7 16.Qxc6 Bd6 17.c5 Be5 18.f4 Black resigned

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Another RHP Jerome Gambit Tournament (Round 3)

Here is the third round of the second Jerome Gambit thematic tournament that I encountered at from 2013 (won by jankrb), starting from the Jerome Gambit position:

jankrb (2055) - musirapha (1874)
Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, RedHotPawn, 2014

(1-0) This game will be covered in a subsequent post.

musirapha (1874) - jankrb (2055)

Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, RedHotPawn, 2014

(0-1) This game will be covered in a subsequent post.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Another RHP Jerome Gambit Tournament - Game 2

If you are playing an opening that is "off the beaten path" and your opponent takes you off of that path, is it a good thing or a bad thing? In the following game Black's opening creativity serves him much less well than following the stodgy main line of the Jerome Gambit.

jankrb (2055) - Red House (1588)
Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, RedHotPawn, 2013

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Ke7

Of the almost 4,600 games in The Database which reach the position after White's 5th move, only 9 show Black's 5th move response, with the simple Knight recapture being the most popular alternative. See "An Odd Line In An Odd Line" and "Jerome Gambit, Paulsen Variation".


Best play now appears to be 6.Qh5! which appeared in 3 games: guest1200 - satmonger, Internet Chess Club, 2001 (1-0, 26); stivb_99 - spymaster,, 2008 (1-0, 7);  and UNPREDICTABLE - aladu, FICS, 2009 (0-1, 70).

Each time, Black missed the best defense, pointed out by Rybka, 6...Bxf2+!? 7.Kxf2 Qf8+ 8.Nf3 Nf6, although White would still have an edge.


Stronger was 6...dxc6, preventing the White d-pawn from advancing 2 squares, as in perrypawnpusher - salla, blitz, FICS, 2010 (1-0, 31).

7.d4 Bb6

There is no need to repeat the offbeat 7...Bb4+, from CoachCrupp - zzzozzzo, FICS, 20088.c3 Bd6 9.Bg5+ Nf6 10.e5 Bxe5 11.dxe5 Kf8 12.0-0 h6 13.exf6 gxf6 14.Be3 d5 15.Bc5+ Kg8 16.Nd2 h5 17.Nf3 Bg4 18.Qd3 Bxf3 19.Qg6 checkmate.

8.Bg5+ Nf6 9.e5 Ba6 


An interesting try, according to Houdini, is 10.Qf3!? Kf7 (not 10...Bxd4 11.Bxf6+ gxf6 12.Qxf6+ Ke8 13.Qxh8+ Ke7 14.Qxh7+) 11.Nd2 h6 (a bit better than 11...Bxd4 12.exf6 Re8+ 13.Ne4 Rxe4+ 14.Qxe4 Bxb2 15.Rb1 Bxf6 16.Qf3 Qe7+ 17.Kd1 Re8 18.Bxf6 gxf6±) 12.Be3 Re8 13.0-0-0 and White has an advantage as he will recover his sacrificed piece.

10...gxf6 11.Be3 Qg8 12.Rg1 Re8 13.a4 c5 14.a5 cxd4 15.axb6 dxe3 16.Rxa6 axb6 17.fxe3 Qg5

Both Kings remain uneasy, but White has an extra piece which he can make use of as soon as he consolidates his position.

18.Qf3 Kf7 19.Kd2 Re7 20.Nc3 Rhe8 21.Nd5 Re4 22.Nf4 Qc5 23.Ra3 Qe5 24.Rd3 Qa5+ 25.c3 Qb5 26.Qh5+ Qxh5 27.Rxd7+ Black resigned

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Another RHP Jerome Gambit Tournament - Game 1

The following game, from a Jerome Gambit thematic tournament at played last year, shows that complicated postions can arise that can challenge both players. In turn, the Queens, then the Kings, face grave danger.

musirapha (1874) - ZorroTheFox (1447)
Giuoco Piano Jerome Gambit tournament, RedHotPawn, 2013

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 

7.Qxc5 d6 8.Qc3 

More frequently played is 8.Qe3.

8...Be6 9.d4 Bd7 10.Qb3+ Kf8 11.f4

11.0-0 was safer. If White was looking for trouble, he could always have played 11.Qxb7!? but he would have risked having his Queen offside for a while.

11...Qh4+ 12.g3 Qh3 13.Qxb7 Rc8

The Rook is probably better placed on the e-file, after which Black should continue his infiltration of the Kingside, as Houdini suggests, 13...Re8 14.Nc3 Qg2 15.Rf1 Bh3 16.Qb5 Qxh2 17.Qe2 Qxe2+ 18.Kxe2 Bxf1+ 19.Kxf1. 

14.e5 N8e7 15.Qf3 h6 

With 5 pieces developed to White's 1, Black does not need to play such a timid move, especially when he had available the useful 15...Bc6. Sometimes the Jerome Gambit can intimidate, however.

16.Nc3 d5 17.Be3 Nf5 18.Kf2

An alternative to consider was 18.0-0-0

18...c6 19.Na4 Nxe3 20.Kxe3 Bg4 21.Qf2 Ke7

22.Nc5 Rhe8

Here both players overlook that 22...Nxf4 23.Qxf4 Rhf8 would trap the White Queen. 

23.Raf1 Kf8 24.f5 Ne7


This move is okay but, instead, 25.Ne6+ Kg8 26.Nf4 would trap the Black Queen. 

25...Nf5+ 26.Kd2 gxf6 27.Qf4 Qg2+ 

Black is thinking about the wrong King, as his own monarch requires attention (protection).


This escape works in the game, but Houdini points out that the strongest idea was to sacrifice the exchange with 28.Rf2 Qxh1 29.Qxg4 when White's attack will be the one to crash through, e.g. 29...Ng7 30.Nd7+ Kf7 31.Nxf6. A Rook up, Black is helpless. 

28...Qe2 29.b3 Ne3

It is hard to believe at first (or second) glance, but the computer suggests that Black can survive with the cheeky 29...fxe5, giving the following hearty battle: 30.Qxh6+ Kg8 31.Qg6+ Ng7 32.Rf7 exd4+ 33.Kb2 Qe5 34.Re1 Bh5 35.Qh6 Bxf7 36.Rxe5 Rxe5 when it assesses that White's pawns help his Queen balance out play against Black's Rook, Bishop and Knight, e.g. 37.Nd7 Re2 38.Nf6+ Kf8 39.Qh8+ Ke7 40.Qxc8 Kxf6 41.Qxc6+ Ne6 42.Qxd5 Rxh2 43.g4 Rf2 44.b4. 

Now White can defend his King (with an exchange sacrifice) and get back to his attack.

30.Rf2 Nd1+ 31.Rxd1 Qxd1 32.Qxf6+ Kg8 33.Qg6+ Kh8 34.Rf7 Qa1+ 35.Kb4 Qxd4+ 36.c4 Qd2+ 37.Ka3 Qa5+ 38.Na4 Black resigned