Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Jerome Gambit Declined

I know that I have adopted a "Take the money and run" approach to the Jerome Gambit declined - 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Ke7/f8 - believing, somewhat cowardly, if pragmatically, that if the defender prefers not to enter an "objectively" won game, but to settle for one where he has a small disadvantage, that White should retreat his attempted-to-sacrifice Bishop. (See "To Jerome or Not Jerome", "It Still Happens - But It Doesn't Have To" and "This Is Your Last Chance" for recent discussions.)

My latest Jerome Gambit game shows that it can be a challenge to squeeze something out of that advantage, however. Especially with the clock ticking loudly in a blitz game, and my nerves failing me (happens to the attacker, too, not just the defender) - until my opponent joined me in mistakes.

perrypawnpusher - Spirochete
2 12 blitz, FICS, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Nc3 Bc5 5.Bxf7+ Ke7 

The Italian Four Knights Jerome Gambit, declined: If you want me to take the Bishop, then I won't.

6.Bb3 Re8

I was surprised to find only one other IFKJG declined with 6.Bb3 in The Database: 6...Nd4 7.Nxd4 Bxd4 8.Nd5+ Nxd5 9.exd5 d6 10.c3 Bb6 11.d3 Qf8 12.Bg5+ Kd7 13.Qg4+ Ke8 14.Qg3 h6 15.Be3 g5 16.O-O-O Bxe3+ 17.Qxe3 Qf4 18.Rhe1 Rf8 19.f3 Qxh2 20.Rd2 Qg3 21.Red1 h5 22.Qe4 Rf4 23.Qg6+ Rf7 24.Qxh5 Bf5 25.Ba4+ Ke7 26.Qh1 Qf4 27.Kb1 Qxa4 28.a3 Raf8 29.g4 Bh7 30.Ka2 Kd8 31.Qh5 Qe8 32.Qxg5+ Kc8 33.Qe3 Kb8 34.Qh6 Bg8 35.g5 Rxf3 36.c4 Bf7 37.Qh4 Bg6 38.Ka1 Qf7 39.Ka2 Qf5 40.Ka1 Rf4 41.Qg3 Rg4 42.Qe3 Qxg5 43.Qe1 Bh5 44.Rc1 Rg1 45.Qxg1 Qxd2 46.Rf1 Rxf1+ 47.Qxf1 Qd1+ 48.Qxd1 Bxd1 White resigned, HauntedKnight - Bernano, FICS, 2013.

7.O-O Kf8 8.d3 d6 9.Bg5 Nd4 10.Nd5 Nxb3 11.axb3 Re6 12.Nxf6 gxf6 13.Bh6+ Ke7 14.Nh4 

White has an edge, based on the awkward placement of Black's King (the extra pawn on b3 isn't worth much), but there is still a lot of work to be done.


This drops a pawn. Better to make me grind it out, with 14...Qg8 15.Be3 Bxe3 16.Nf5+ Kd8 17.Nxe3 Qg5.


Beginning a whole series of poor moves. Nerves!?

Much better was 15.Bg5+ Rf6 16.Qh5 Kd7 17.Nxf5 adding the exchange to my material edge.

15...Kd7 16.Qh5 Qg8 

Black should not be allowed to develop a counter attack, but, to his credit, he does.


Not the wisest. Thematic was 17.Be3 Bxe3 18.Nxe3 c6 19.f4.

It is not that White is worse - he is better - but that I seem to have misplaced my head. (Blame it on time trouble.)

17...Rg6 18.Qe7+

Useless. White should bite the bullet with 18.Qh4 Rxg2+ 19.Kh1 Qg4 20.Qxg4 Rxg4 21.Rg1 and be happy with his edge. (It's there, somewhere.)

18...Kc6 19.g3 

The Queen should have retreated 19.Qh4.

Black should now win a piece after 19...Bxf5.


Both my opponent and I now missed Knight checks at e7 that could have settled things a bit. (Blame it on time trouble.)

20.Qh4 Qf7 21.Be3

Better 21.Ne7+ 

21...Bb6 22.Bxb6

Better 22.Ne7+

22...cxb6 23.Kh1

Uh, 23.Ne7+.


Better to grab the pawn with 23...Bxf5 24.exf5 Qxf5


Headless pawn-grabbing. It was still time to use the e7 square, this time with 24.Qe7 Qxe7 25.Nxe7+.

24...Rg4 25.Qh3 h5 26.Qg2 

It turns out, despite appearances, that White is defending well enough to begin a counter attack.

26...Bxf5 27.exf5+ d5 28.c4 


A slip on Black's part. (Blame it on time trouble.)

29.Qxd5+ Black resigned


No comments: