Saturday, September 5, 2015

On the Run

When the Jerome Gambit player has his opponent on the run, he should finish him off quickly. The following game is a good example.

sabreman - Lovebuzz
standard, 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 Nh6 

Attacking White's Queen might ge a good idea in other lines of the Jerome, but here it only drives Her Majesty into action that she was already contemplating.

After White's 8th move, the computer says he is "objectively" lost. After Black's 8th move, the computer says he is "objectively" lost. White must act quickly to take advantage of his advantage.

9.Qxe5+ Kc6 10.Qd5+ 

An improvement over 10.d4 which still turned out okay, thanks to a little help: 10..Ng4? 11.Qxc5 checkmate, UNPREDICTABLE - acuriel, FICS, 2009

10...Kb6 11.Nc3 

The text is an improvement over 11.d4, seen in perrypawnpusher - hotintheshade, blitz, FICS, 2009 (1-0, 46) and senseidea - Liosikne, FICS, 2012 (1-0, 15). 

Best according to Stockfish 6 is 11.Qb3+!?, which is worth exploring, e.g. 11...Ka6 (11...Kc6 12.Nc3 d5 13.Qb5+ Kd6 14.e5+ Ke6 15.Qxc5) 12.Qa4+ Kb6 13.b4 d6 (13...Bd4 14.Qa5+ Kc6 15.Qd5+ Kb6 16.a4 Bf2+ 17.Kxf2 Qh4+ 18.g3 Ng4+ 19.Kg1 Qxh2+ 20.Rxh2 a5 21.Qc5+ Ka6 22.Qxa5#; 13...Bf2+ 14.Kxf2 a6 15.Bb2; 13...a6 14.bxc5+ Ka7 15.Nc3; 13...Be7 14.Qa5+ Kc6 15.Nc3 a6 16.b5+ Kd6 17.Qb4+ c5 18.bxc6+ Kxc6 19.Qc4+ Kb6 20.Qd4+ Kc7 21.Qxg7 Nf5 22.Nd5+ Kb8 23.exf5) 14.bxc5+ dxc5 15.Bb2.


This distraction does not work.

Neither does 11...d6 12.Qb3+ (12.Na4+?! was perrypawnpusher - Ondras, blitz, FICS, 2012 [1-0, 31]) Bb4 13.Qxb4+ Ka6 14.Qb5 checkmate.

12.g3 Qf6 13.Na4+ Ka6 14.Nxc5+ Kb5 15.a4+ Kb6 16.a5+ Black resigned

Checkmate awaits.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Don't Try to Out-Think Me Redux

Image result for free clip art brainy

There is plenty of room in chess, at all levels, for a dash of "psychology", but it should only replace "good moves" in dire (or controlled) circumstances. Otherwise the outcome is likely to be something like the following.

(Here we have another example of the aphorism: in the Jerome Gambit, when White has equalized, he has the advantage.)

Wall,B - Igidius, 2015

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d3 Bc5 5.Bxf7+ Kxf7 6.Nc3 

This time Bill chooses to develop his Knight over castling in this "modern" Jerome Gambit - for alternatives, see "Winning With the Jerome Gambit: A Game Full of Lessons".


There was nothing wrong with 6...d6.

In other games opponents have tried 6...Ng4 (Wall,B - Richard123,, 2010 [1-0, 10]); and 6...Rf8 (Wall,B - BarAbbas,, 2012 [1-0, 45]).

With the text Black returns the "favor" of a sacrificed piece to create a displaced (and possibly vulnerable) King. Of course, he also moves from an "objectively" won game to an even game, which is generous of him. Such "psychology" appears regularly in Jerome Gambit games, and White can always say "thank you".

As I have cautioned the defender before: Don't try to out-think me, just play the refutation. 

7.Kxf2 Ng4+ 8.Kf1

Black's attack goes nowhere, but it is fun to include a game to show how it might have gone - with a good bit of luck and cooperation - 8.Kg3 d6 9.Ng5+ Kg6 10.h3 h6 11.hxg4 hxg5 12.Rxh8 Qxh8 13.Nd5 Qh4+ 14.Kf3 Bxg4+ 15.Ke3 Bxd1 16.Bd2 Qg3 checkmate, RomanDurdis - varsa, FICS, 2005. 

8...Rf8 9.Bg5 Qe8

Bill suggests, instead, 9...Nf6 10.Nd5 Nxd5 11.exd5 Ne7 with a roughly equal game. 

10.h3 h6 11.hxg4 hxg5 12.Qd2 Kg8 

Black gives up a pawn, perhaps thinking that it leaves White only a doubled, isolated pawn ahead; and, in the meantime, he safeguards his King. He puts his faith in his counter-attacking Knight.

13.Qxg5 Nd4

The piece hits the Knight at f3 and the pawn at c2. Surely this is compensation?!

14.Nd5 Nxf3 15.gxf3 Rxf3+ 

See, Black now has his pawn back.

Alas, White now has checkmate.

How did this happen??

16.Kg2 Qf7 17.Ne7+ Black resigned

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

A New Day in the Life of the Jerome Gambit

It is always nice to come across a Jerome Gambit game with a player who is new to me, and who appears to be new to the gambit.

In the following game White achieves a significant advantage, and then follows a sedate course to the full point. While it may be fun to point out some slam-bang checkmates along the way (it is worth playing them all out), it is always important to remember that "a win is a win". The end is inexorable, either way.

filipokpok - djernigan
blitz, FICS, 2015

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 7.Qd5+

The "nudge", usually a sign that the player is at least a little bit familiar with Jerome Gambit theory.

7...Kf8 8.Qxc5+ d6 9.Qe3 Ne5 

This move is not so much "bad" as it is provocative. It is perhaps telling that there is only one other game in The Database with this move.

10.O-O Nf6 11.d4

An improvement over 11.f4 as in perrypawnpusher - mconst, blitz, FICS, 2010 (0-1, 25).


"When in doubt, neglect your development and attack the enemy Queen."

12.Qe2 Qe8 13.Nc3 c6 14.f4 Bd7 

Here we have a typical Jerome Gambit dynamic: Black has a somewhat restricted development (especially on the Queenside) while White has a menacing pawn center. Both need plans. Perhaps Black could threaten to undermine the "Jerome pawns" with 14...b5!? instead. 

15. f5 Nh6

Falling in with White's plans. Perhaps, analagous to the previous note, Black could look at 15...c5!?

16.Bxh6 gxh6 17.e5 dxe5 18.dxe5 Nd5 19.e6 Nxc3 20.bxc3 Bc8

If you are a tactical maniac, then the game is already over.

If you would like a quiet, step-by-step game that leads to "1-0", you can find that here, too.

Let's continue.


Solid. When the "Jerome pawns" advance, they will sweep everything before them.

Alternately, there is 21.Qe5 h5 22.Qxh8+ Ke7 23.Qg7+ Kd8
24.Rad1+ Bd7 25.Rxd7+ Kc8 26.Rc7+ Kd8 27.Rd1+ Qd7 28.Qxd7 checkmate. Check it out, the thematic moves are instructive.


Black's strongest defense is 21...Rg8, but then comes 22.e7+ Kf7 23.Qh5+ Kf6 24.Qxh6+ Kf7 25.Re6 Bxe6 26.Qxe6+ Kg7 27.f6+ Kh6 28.f7+ Rg6 29.Qe3+ Kg7 30.Qe5+ Kh6 31.Rf5 Rxg2+ 32.Kxg2 Qg8+ 33.Kh3 c5 34.Qe6+ Qg6 35.f8=Q+ Rxf8 36.exf8=Q checkmate. Of course, the defender would probably turn over his King before the 36th move.


Well, that certainly would be enough for me to quail on defense.

Black does not take the hint, so perhaps it is okay to mention 22.Qe5 Rg8 23.f6 Qxe6 24.Qc5+ Kf7 25.Rxe6 Bxe6 26.Qe7+ Kg6 27.Qxe6 Rgf8 28.Qf5+ Kf7 29.Qxh7+ Ke6 30.Qe7+ Kd5 31.Rf5+ Kc4 32.Rc5 checkmate 

22...Qc5+ 23.Kh1 Qd5 


Black's Queen has escaped from under the footsteps of White's pawns, and White will have none of that: it is time to get his sacrificed material back, followed by a solid Rook and pawn endgame.

Alternately, there was 24.e7+ Ke8 25.f7+ Qxf7 26.Rxf7 Kxf7 27.Rf1+ Ke8 28.Qe5 Bh3 29.gxh3 Kd7 30.e8=Q+ Rhxe8 31.Rf7+ Re7 32.Rxe7+ Kd8 33.Qc7 checkmate. Remember, you attack your way and I'll attack my way...

24...Qxe6 25.Qxe6

It is silly to even mention the alternative: 25.Qd2 Kf7 26.Qxh6 Ke8 27.f7+ Kd8 28.Rxe6 Bxe6 29.Qxe6 Rf8 30.c5 h6 31.Rd1+ Kc7 32.Rd7+ Kc8 33.Qe8+ Rxe8 34.fxe8=Q checkmate

25...Bxe6 26.Rxe6 Kf7 

As filipokpok planned.

27.Re7+ Kg6 28.Rxb7

The text is enough. Congratulations if you also saw 28.Rg7+ Kh5 29.g3 c5 30.Rf5 checkmate 

28...Rhf8 29.f7 

White has this all figured out. (He could have been distracted by 29.Rg7+ Kh5 30.Rf3 c5 31.Rh3 checkmate.) 

29...a5 30.Rc7 Ra6 31.c5 a4 32.Rd7 Ra5 33.Rd6+ Kg7 34.Rxc6 Rxf7 35.Rxf7+ Kxf7 

Often in blitz "simpler is better" and so White has been willing to give up his advanced f-pawn to swap Rooks. There are more passed pawns available!

36.Rxh6 Kg7 37.Rc6 Rb5 38.Kg1 Rb2 39.Ra6 Rxc2 40.Rxa4 Rxc5 41.g4 Kg6 42.h4 Black resigned


[This is post #2,100 for the blog. August 2015 was also the 4th most visited month for Many thanks for the support and encouragement of Readers everywhere - Rick]

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Fast, Faster, Fastest

Here are 3 Jerome Gambit games I picked up from the site Since the time limits were, respectively, 5 0, 3 0 and 1 0, you can expect some inaccuracies - but never a lack of excitement! (Interesting: the shorter the time limit, the longer the game.)

praentitong - fortescxi
5 0 blitz,, 2015
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 7.d3 d6 8.Bg5 Nf6 9.0-0 Nxh5 White resigned

We have seen White in the next game before, in an earlier Abrahams Jerome Gambit.

obamaGANDON - rpap
3 0 blitz,, 2015
1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Bc5 3.Bxf7+ Kxf7 4.Qh5+ Kf8 5.Qxe5 Qe7 6.Qf4+ Nf6 7.d3 Ke8 8.Qxc7 Nc6 9.Bg5 Qe5 10.Qxe5+ Nxe5 11.Bxf6 gxf6 12.Nc3 Bb4 13.0-0-0 Bxc3 14.bxc3 d6 15.f4 Ng4 16.h3 Nf2 17.Nf3 Nxh1 18.Rxh1 Be6 19.g4 Bxa2 20.f5 Bf7 21.g5 fxg5 22.Nxg5 Rc8 23.c4 a6 24.Re1 b5 25.e5 dxe5 26.Rxe5+ Kf8 27.d4 Rxc4 28.d5 Rc5 29.Nxf7 Kxf7 30.Kd2 Rd8 31.Kd3 Rcxd5+ 32.Rxd5 Rxd5+ 33.Ke4 Rc5 34.h4 Rxc2 35.h5 Rc5 36.Kf4 b4
White resigned

bbyd - jposthuma 
1 0 bullet,, 2015
1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Bc5 3.Bxf7+ Kxf7 4.Qh5+ g6 5.Qxe5 Bxf2+ 6.Kxf2 Qf6+ 7.Qxf6+ Nxf6 8.Nf3 Nxe4+ 9.Ke3 d5 10.Rf1 Re8 11.d3 Ng3+ 12.Kf2 Nxf1 13.Ng5+ Kf6 14.Kxf1 Bg4 15.Nc3 c6 16.Nxh7+ Kg7 17.Ng5 Nd7 18.Bf4 Nf6 19.Bc7 Bf5 20.Ba5 Re7 21.Bb4 Re3 22.Bc5 Rae8 23.Bxe3 Rxe3 24.Re1 Rxe1+ 25.Kxe1 Ng4 26.Nf3 Kf6 27.Ke2 Ne5 28.Nxe5 Kxe5 29.Nd1 Bg4+ 30.Ke1 Bxd1 31.Kxd1 Kf4 32.Ke2 d4 33.g3+ Kg4 34.Kf2 Kh3 35.Kg1 g5 36.Kh1 g4 37.Kg1 c5 38.Kh1 b6 39.a3 b5 40.b3 a6 41.b4 c4 42.dxc4 bxc4 43.a4 d3 44.cxd3 cxd3 45.b5 d2 46.b6 d1Q checkmate