Saturday, November 1, 2014

Repair Work

In the early years of this blog (2008 and 2009) I experimented in different ways by adding a small chess board to each post, upon which the Reader could play out the moves of the game presented. In one format, code linked my blog post to another web page where the chess board was set up.

This worked until the linked-to web page became inactive. I discovered at that point that some of the earlier Jerome Gambit blog posts (i.e. from 5 or 6 years back) were viewable only for a few seconds, after which they were replaced by information about the availability of the second website. Frustrating.

When I provide a link in a current Jerome Gambit blog post to an older post, I now make sure to go back to the older post and edit out the linking code, so that the post is viewable.

I am in the process of visiting all of the early blog posts, and making the proper edits so that all of them will be visible for as long as Readers are willing to gaze. This may take a bit of time.

In the meantime, as they say in construction, "Please pardon our dust".

[Although there was some fall-off from September 2014's record-setting number of visitors to the blog, October 2014 still placed in the top 10 months, calculated since the start in 2008. Many thanks, Readers - and please feel welcome to continue to visit!] 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Chess Is Not Life

Despite what different masters are reported to have said, it is not true that "Chess Is Life". Sometimes it appears that "life" is what keeps us busy, and occasionally from playing chess, though...

perrypawnpusher  - mnoori
blitz, FICS, 2014

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

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 7.Qd5+ Ke8 8.Qxc5 d6 9.Qe3 Qf6


The is one move among many possible.

Bill Wall has played 10.d3, as in Wall,B - G3LC, 2011 (1-0, 22).

Louis Morin has show an interest in 10.d4, as in mrjoker - Igor77, Internet Chess Club, 2008 (1-0, 70), guest2199 - guest401, Internet Chess Club, 2004 (1-0, 87) and MrJoker - Melbourne, Internet Chess Club, 2011 (1-0, 13).

I've varied with 10.0-0, as in perrypawnpusher - TJPOT, blitz, FICS, 2009 (1-0, 48) and perrypawnpusher - LeiCar, blitz, FICS, 2010 (1-0, 25). 


Possibly better was 10...c6, as in perrypawnpusher - pitrisko, blitz, FICS 2011 (1-0, 28), perrypawnpusher - HGBoone, blitz, FICS, 2011 (1-0,59) and MrJoker - ZICO, Internet Chess Club, 2012 (1-0, 34).

11.0-0 N8e7 12.f4 Bd7 

In this kind of position, I usually see things differently during the game than Houdini sees afterwards. I think "tactics" and play f4-f5, "kicking" Black's Knight, hoping to chase him to e5 when I can "kick" it again with d2-d4. Houdini "thinks" "position" and chooses d2-d4 instead, suggesting that Black respond to a later f4-f5 by withdrawing his Knight to g8.

13.f5 Ne5

In all fairness, had my opponent played 13...Nf8 here instead, I would have followed up with 14.d4.

14.d4 Nc4

My opponent prefers to play actively, but 14...N5c6 was probably better, with and edge to Black.

15.Qd3 b5 

I was pretty sure during the game that Houdini would want me now to play 16.a4, but I couldn't figure out what would be wrong with Black simply defending with 16...c6. After the game Houdini showed me 17.e5 dxe5 18.Ne4!? with a sharp attack - good for you, Readers, who figured that out!

I was unhappy with the possibility of 16.a4 b4 as well, although, again, after the game Houdini said "no worries" after 17.Nb5 Bxb5 18.axb5 and White will eventually capture the pawn at b4. Well, okay...

16.b3 Nb6

After the game Houdini again pointed out that if 16...b4, White would have the familiar 17.e5 dxe5 18.Ne4!? I think I would have answered 16...b4 with 17.bxc4 bxc3 18.Qxc3 and been happy with my broad pawn center.


At this point my opponent seems to have disappeared, and Black forfeited on time. Quite likely, "life" intruded; I hope nothing bad. 

Instead, after 17...Bxb5 18.Qxb5+ Nd7 19.Bb2 White would have a comfortable game, with three pawns for his sacrificed piece, and possibly a small edge.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Almost There

Four games remain to be finished in the current Italian Game thematic tournament. From seven groups of five players each, fifteen will advance, likely to form three subsequent groups of five.

With a 6-2 record, I am sitting on the top of Group #6. djdave28 will advance along with me, joining Hywel2, deckers1066, beftahk (top rated at 2036, having scored 8-0 in the first round), alexmoore421, Reinlynx, nissk, ashutoschess (lowest rated at 1279, but having scored 8-0 in the first round), ChessTitan249, Zeddicus16, Rebecca_Wiebe, ermeel, MatthiasBerger; and either smitty67 or mathiaserdhal.

More Jerome Gambits are promised!

Sunday, October 26, 2014


Although my opponent chose one of the stronger and more complicated defenses to the Jerome Gambit in the following game, I had my chance to level things out - but missed it. After that, I was simply out-played.

perrypawnpusher - HarlemKnight
blitz, FICS, 2014

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+

The start of a complicated, but deadly counter-attack.

9.g3 Nf3+ 10.Kf1 

For some reason I played the text (also see "Repairing A Variation" Part 1, 23 and 4), instead of 10.Kd1, with which I was 6-0, including 3 games that ended after 10...Qe7 11.Qd5 checkmate (perrypawnpusher - fortytwooz, blitz, FICS, 2010; perrypawnpusher - javistas, blitz, FICS, 2010; and perrypawnpusher - thinan, blitz, FICS, 2010).


I don't think I'll ever be as lucky as to receive the mouse-slip 10...Qh3+ as in perrypawnpusher - rjbrigs, blitz, FICS, 2011, (1-0, 10) and perrypawnpusher - inasoy, blitz, FICS, 2014 (1-0, 51) again; although stranger things have happened.

On the other hand, 10...Nh2+ was good to me in perrypawnpusher - intssed, blitz, FICS, 2010 (1-0, 12), perrypawnpusher - JTIV, blitz, FICS, 2010 (1-0, 32), perrypawnpusher - mikelars, blitz, FICS, 2011, (1-0, 12) and perrypawnpusher - jgknight, blitz, FICS, 2011 (1-0, 68).

The retreat 10...Qh6, however, did not end so nicely for me, in the nonetheless enjoyable perrypawnpusher - Temmo, JG3 thematic,, 2008 (0-1,43)

11.Qd5+ Ke7 12.Qxc5+ Kd8 13.e5

Better was 13.Kg2 as in perrypawnpusher - james042665,, 2008 (0-1, 18). 

13...Qf7 14.Kf2 b6 15.Qe3 Bb7 16.Nc3 Nh6 17.h3 Nxd2

Up until this point, Black has been doing very well, and I was surprised to discover later that he has no other games, as Black or White, in The Database. It was time to pour on the heat with 17...Nf5, or let the advanced Knight escape with 17...Ng5.


Missing my one chance - and they were not coming by very often. With 18.Bxd2 Bxh1 19.Rxh1 White would have a pawn for the exchange, and the game would be a long way from being decided.

18...Nc4 19.Qd3 Qe6

The text is okay, but 19...Nxe5 would be crushing. Black does not need to sacrifice to win, however.

20.g4 g6 21.f5

The only way to stay in the game, according to Houdini, was to make a  play against the wayward Knight with 21.Nd5, although after the exchanges 21...Qxd5 22.Qxd5 Bxd5 23.Rxd5 White would be playing with one pawn for his sacrificed piece, and Black would not have to be in any hurry getting his pieces to better squares to press his attack.

21...gxf5 22.Bxh6 fxg4 23.hxg4 Nxe5 24.Qf5 

This blunder ended it all.

24...Nxg4+ White resigned