Thursday, March 17, 2016


It had been months since I had played the Jerome Gambit at blitz speed, and I worried that I might have forgotten too much. The following game, however, shows that the opening was as reliable as ever for me.

perrypawnpusher - grosshirn
2 19 blitz, FICS, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.Qf5+ Kd6 8.f4 Ng6

Somewhat inexact. See the note (below) to White's 11th move.

9.Qd5+ Ke7 10. Qxc5+ d6 

Better than 10...Ke8 as seen in perrypawnpusher - parlance, blitz, FICS, 2011 (0-1, 22). 


After 11 moves we have reached a position in which White has an extra move (f2-f4) in comparison to the line 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 7.Qd5+ Ke7 8.Qxc5+ d6 9.Qe3. So, if Black wants to give up his King's Bishop and post his Knight at g6, 6...Ng6 might have been a better choice.

Interestingly, Stockfish 7 recommends the alternate retreat 11.Qc3 (no example in The Database), suggesting that Black meet that with 11...Kf8 (11...Nxf4?12.Qxg7+ Ke8 13.O-O Qf6 14.Qxf6 Ne2+ 15.Kf2 Nxf6 16.Kxe2 Nxe4 with advantage to White) 12.O-O Nf6 13.f5 Ne5 14.d4 Nc6 15.e5 dxe5 16.dxe5 Qd4+ 17.Qxd4 Nxd4 18.Na3 Ne8) with an equal game.


The text is about equal to 11...Kf8 (perrypawnpusher - Valseg, blitz, FICS, 2011 [1-0, 39]), better than 11...Bd7 (perrypawnpusher - GabrielChime, blitz, FICS, 2009 [1-0, 29]), and much better than 11...Be6 (perrypawnpusher - MrNatewood, blitz, FICS, 2010 [1-0, 12]).


Or 12.d4 as in perrypawnpusher - thinan, blitz, FICS, 2010 (1-0, 31).


This seems reasonable at first glance, as Black is considering castling-by-hand. However, 12...Re8 was probably better, as in perrypawnpusher - spydersweb, blitz, FICS, 2012 (1-0, 24) and perrypawnpusher - tjaksi, blitz, FICS, 2014 (1-0, 18). 

13.f5 Ne5 14.d4 Nc4 15.Qd3 Nb6 16.Bg5 h6 17.Bh4 Nbd7

Black has covered up with his pieces, and still has his piece-for-two-pawns material advantage, but White's "Jerome pawns" and freer development give him the advantage.

18.Nc3 c6 19.Rae1 Qb6 20.Kh1 Ke8

Breaking the pin on his Knight, but White is ready to crash through, anyhow. 

21.e5 dxe5 22.dxe5 Ng8 23.f6

Even better, according to Stockfish 7 after the game, was 23.Ne4 Ne7 24.Qd6 Rf7 25.e6 with a forced checkmate.

23...gxf6 24.exf6+ Kd8 Black resigned

Checkmate will be coming soon after 25.f7+.

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