Sunday, July 17, 2016

If You Can't Bash Them With the Jerome Gambit, Maybe You Can Bore Them to Tears


I don't always get to play the Jerome Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+), no matter how hard I try. In its place, I sometimes explore the opening line suggested by chessfriend Yury Bukayev. The advantage that White gets is small - so small, in the following game, that I think it lulled my opponent to sleep...

(I suppose that I should be embarassed.)

perrypawnpusher - aquitanus
6 12 blitz, FICS, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 

The Two Knights Defense. That's okay. I always try for a transposition to the Italian Four Knights Jerome Gambit after 4.Nc3 Bc5 5.Bxf7+ or the Semi-Italian Four Knights Jerome Gambit after 4.Nc3 a6 5.0-0 Bc5 6.Bxf7+.

4.Nc3 Nxe4 

Rats. Going for the "fork trick". For a brief introduction as it relates to the Jerome, see the post "Jerome Gambit vs Two Knights Defense (Part 3)". Follow that up with "Further Explorations" (Parts 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5).

5.Nxe4 d5 6.Bd3 dxe4 7.Bxe4 Bd6 8.Bxc6+ bxc6


Instead, Bukayev recommends 9.d4 or 9.d3. Next time I will remember that.

9...Bg4 10.d3 Qf6 11.Re1 O-O-O 12.Re3

A good alternative was 12.Bg5.

12...Bc5 13.Re4 Rd4 14.Be3 Rxe4 15.dxe4 Rd8 16.Qe2 Qd6 17.Bxc5 Qxc5 18.Rd1 Rxd1+ 19.Qxd1 Qc4 

White has what my father used to call "a whole lot of nothing". Black's Bishop vs Knight and better placed Queen balances out his troubled Queenside pawns. Perhaps White's best try for a slight edge is now 20.Nxe5.

20.Qd3 Qxd3 21.cxd3 Bxf3 22.gxf3 Kd7

How does that old "Porgy and Bess" tune go? I've got plenty of nothing, and nothing's plenty for me...

I did have more time on my clock, though, and I figured that I was not risking much by continuing to play. (It is an embarassingly bland position for a Jerome Gambiteer - but not as embarassing as a losing one.)

23.Kf1 Kd6 24.Ke2 g5 25.Ke3 c5 26.Kd2 Kc6 27.Kc3 Kb5 28.Kb3 a5 29.a4+ Kc6 30.Kc4 h6 31.b3 h5 32.Kc3 Kd6 33.Kd2 c6 34.Kc3 Ke6 35.Kc4 Kd6 

Not much going on. Black has a possible slip - if he has become bored with me. (I have a later slip, if I get too excited.)

36.Kc3 Ke6 37.Kd2 Kf6 38.h3 Kg6

An unfortunate slip that tosses away the draw. Of course, 38...Ke6, heading back to the Queenside, was the move.

39.Kc3 Kf6 40.Kc4 h4 41.Kxc5 g4

Giving me a chance to blunder with the rote "capture toward the center" 42.hxg3? h4, giving Black the win.

42.fxg4  Black resigned

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