Friday, August 12, 2016

Jerome Gambit: Crushing Attack on the King

Not too long ago I received a request for a copy of The Database from someone who plays the Jerome Gambit. I quickly emailed it off! Shortly later I received a very nice game from him, which I am very happy to share - see below.

Internet, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.d4 Bxd4 7.Qxd4 d6 8.O-O Nf6 

9.Nc3 Re8 10.Bg5 c6

Black would like to keep White's Knight off of d5, where it can join in the attack on the piece at f6. However, a move later he decides to use the same pawn to harass the enemy Queen. This kind of use of time can cause problems.

11.f4 c5 12.Qf2 Ned7 13.Rae1 Kg8 14.Qg3

Black has prudently castled-by-hand, but his development lags, so that even though he has an extra piece, the game is even.


Stockfish 7 suggests the humorous 14...Nh5 15.Qf2 Nhf6 16.Qg3 Nh5 etc with a draw. I am sure that White was looking for more than a draw!

White now breaks in the center, and the attack is on.

15.e5 dxe5 16.fxe5 Nxe5 

This move adds to Black's pain.

17.Bxf6 Qd7 18.Bxe5 Bb7 19.Rf5 Re7 

Of course, if 19...Qxf5 then 20.Qxg7 checkmate.

20.Rg5 Rae8

Black said he was expecting his opponent to play 20...g6 and then he was going to crash through in a few moves with h4-h5-hxg6. He was sure 21.Rxg6+ also wins but he didn't want to exchange so many pieces (21...hxg6 22. Qxg6+ Rg7 23. Bxg7 Qxg7 24. Qxg7+ Kxg7 25. Re7+) just to be up a Knight and needing to march the g and h pawns up the board.

21.Rd1 Black resigned 

As White noted, if Black tries to save the Queen with 21...Qc8 then 22.Rxg7+ Kf8 (22...Rxg7 23.Qxg7#; 22...Kh8 23.Rg8#) 23.Rg8+ Kf7 24.Qg7+ Ke6 25.Qf6 checkmate

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

In Search of Eine Schach-Blindenhund...

I have won my first 4 Jerome Gambit games in the ongoing Giuoco Piano tournament, and, frankly, I am worried.

There is no excitment in winning the following way: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Black forfeited on time. Nor is there in: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Black forfeited on time.

In my next game, while over-thinking in a deep theoretical battle, I overlooked a chance to fork my opponent's King and Queen with one of my "Jerome Pawns"! Luckily for me - unfortunately for my opponent - a half-dozen moves later I was able to fork his King and Queen with my Knight... I certainly could have benefitted from a chess seeing eye dog!

Finally, I reached the following dynamic position in another game, which ended simply, but which should have engulfed me in a forest of complexity:

Once the smoke of the game had cleared, Stockfish 7 recommended as best play here the committal 18...Nxf6 19.Rf4 d5 20.Raf1 Re6 21.c4 c6 22.Qg3 Qe7 23.Nf3 dxc4 24.Ne5 Ke8 25.Qf3 h5 26.Rxf6 Rxf6 27.Qxf6 Qxf6 28.Rxf6 Ke7 29.Rf7+ Kd6 30.Rxh7 Be6 31.Rxh5 c3 32.bxc3 Bxa2 where White would have an edge... I do not think that I could have seen my way clear to get to there.

Instead, my opponent was tempted by the Knight at d2, and after 18...Nxd2 19.Qg3 things looked desperate for Black, although Stockfish 7, again in the post mortem, found a tricky way for Black's King to escape most of the danger: 19...Kf7 20.Qg7+ Ke6 21.Rae1+ Kd5 22.Qf7+ Be6 23.Rf5+ Kc6 24.d5+ Bxd5 25.Qxd5+ Kd7 26.Rd1 Re6 27.f7 c6 28.f8N+ Qxf8 29.Rxf8 cxd5 30.Rxa8 Nc4 31.b3 Ne3 32.Rd2 a6

Easy win for White, right? That's what the computer thinks. I can't see it.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Semi-Italian Jerome Gambit: Encouraged Aggression

In the following game White adopts a quiet continuation, 4.0-0, but when his opponent plays 4...h6 he decides to shift to an aggressive game - with positive results coming quickly.

Abdulsalamfaraj - MarleyIsTheGame
10 0 blitz,, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.O-O h6 5.Bxf7+

White is encouraged by Black's timid pawn move, and transposes to a line in the Semi-Italian Jerome Gambit.

5...Kxf7 6.Nxe5+ Kf6 7.Qh5

This is an improved response over 7.Nxc6 of perrypawnpusher - gmann, blitz, FICS, 2010, (1-0, 39).


Weird would be 7...g5 8.Qf7+ Kxe5 9.b4 Bd4 10.c3 Nf6 11.cxd4+ Nxd4 12.Bb2.

8.Qf5+ Ke7 9.Qxe5+ Kf7 10.Qd5+ Kf8 11.Qxc5+ d6 12.Qc4 Nf6

White has regained his sacrificed piece, has two extra pawns, and a much safer King. Black fights back, but cannot keep pace with his opponent.

13.Nc3 c6 14.d3 Qe7 15.Bf4 Be6 16.Qd4 d5 

17.exd5 Nxd5 18.Nxd5 cxd5 19.Rae1 Kg8 20.Re5 Qf6

21.Rfe1 Kh7 22.c3 Bd7 23.Rxd5 Qxd4 24.Rxd4 Bc6 

Black has castled-by-hand, placed his Bishop on a strong diagonal and linked his Rooks. His three pawn disadvantage makes the likelihood of transitioning to a "safe" Bishops-of-opposite-colors endgame slight.

25.h3 Rhe8 26.Be5 Re7 27.Rg4 Rae8 28.d4 g5 29.Re3 Bd5 30.b3 a5 31.c4 Be6 32.Rgg3 Bf5 

The Black Bishop has shifted to defense. It is not enough. It will try harassing White's Queenside pawns, but that will not be enough, either.

33.Rgf3 Bb1 34.a3 Ba2 35.Rf6 Re6 36.Rf7+ Kg6 

Black's King is now in a checkmating net as well.

37.Rxb7 a4 38.g4 axb3 39.Rg7 checkmate