Friday, September 23, 2016

Jerome Gambit: Unfinished Symphony (Part 1)

The following game, my most recent Jerome Gambit from an ongoing tournament, was an adventure from start to finish. The adventure was shorter than I expected, however. It is filled out with related games played at a number of different online sites, all from The Database.

perrypawnpusher - Nivaethan2000
Giuoco Piano Thematic Tournament, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ke6 7.f4

This is a popular line, but it is the first time that I have played it. I have preferred 7.Qf5+, and am something like 59 - 10 with the move. That's a score of almost 86% - why take the risk of something new? As I mentioned in a previous post, I need to keep learning about the Jerome Gambit.

White's King is going to be insecure for a while, and if he castles, it will be Queenside.

7...Qf6 8.Rf1 g6

This pawn kick is understandable, but Knight moves also have been played.

For example, 8... Ne7 was seen in Wall,B - Asterisk engine, Palm Bay, FL, 2015 (1-0, 39).

Also 8...Nh6 9.Nc3 c6 10.fxe5 Qxe5 11.Qh4 Rf8 12.Rxf8 Bxf8 13.d3 Bb4 14.Bd2 Qf6 15.Qh5 d6 16.Qe8+ Qe7 17.Qh8 g5 18.h4 g4 19.Bxh6 Bxc3+ 20.bxc3 Qxh4+ 21.Ke2 Kd7 22.Rf1 Kc7 23.Rf7+ Kb6 24.Qd4+ Ka6 25.Qa4+ Kb6 26.Be3+ c5 27.Qb3+ Kc6 28.Qd5+ Kb5 29.Rxb7+ Black resigned, tapirus - mrdenetop,, 2011.

There was the creative 8...Nd3+ as in MrJoker - Melbourne, Internet Chess Club 2011 (1-0, 29). 

9.Qh3+ Ke7

Again, this is not the only move (although it foreshadows the theme of play along the dark squares).

Examples of games with the novel way of returning the piece, 9...Ng4, are mrjoker - jmt, Internet Chess Club, 2008 (1-0, 29);  Wall,B - Guest3164644, 2013 (1-0, 20); and Wall,B - Betarsolta,, 2015 (1-0, 12). 

The imprudent 9...Kf7 was seen in Wall,B - Guest1690223,, 2012 (1-0, 12).

The alternative 9...Kd6 has been met several ways: 

10.fxe5+ Qxe5 11.d3 (11.Nc3!?) Kc6 12.Nc3 d6 13.Qf3 Be6 14.Bf4 Qh5 15.g4 Bxg4 16.Qh1 Bb4 17.e5+ Kb6 18.Qg1+ Ka6 19.Qd4 Bxc3+ 20.bxc3 Nh6 21.Qa4+ Kb6 22.Rb1+ Black disconnected and forfeited, MrJoker - Melbourne, Internet Chess Club, 2011; 

10.Qg3 Nf7 (best is 10...Nd3+) 11.e5+ Nxe5 12.Nc3 Ke6 13.Ne4 Nf3+ 14.Qxf3 Qh4+ 15.g3 Qe7 16.f5+ Kd5 17.Kd1 Qxe4 18.c4+ Ke5 19.Re1 d5 20.Rxe4+ dxe4 21.d4+ Bxd4 22.Qf4+ Kf6 23.fxg6+ Kxg6 24.Qg5+ Kf7 25.Qd5+ Be6 26.Qxd4 Nf6 27.Ke1 Rhf8 28.Qe5 Rac8 29.Bg5 Kg6 30.Bd2 Bf5 31.Qf4 e3 32.Bxe3 Rce8 33.Ke2 Bg4+ 34.Kd3 Rd8+ 35.Kc2 Bf5+ 36.Kb3 Rd3+ 37.Kb4 a5+ 38.Kxa5 b6+ 39.Kb4 c5+ 40.Kb5 Bd7+ 41.Kxb6 Nd5+ 42.cxd5 Rxf4 43.Bxf4 Rxd5 44.Rc1 Be6 45.b3 Kf5 46.Kc6 Kf6 47.Rc2 Rf5 48.Bc1 Bd5+ 49.Kd6 Ba8 50.Bb2+ Kg6 51.Be5 Rf8 52.Rxc5 Rf2 53.a4 Rxh2 54.b4 Ra2 55.a5 Bh1 56.Bc3 Rg2 57.b5 Rxg3 58.b6 Rd3+ 59.Kc7 Re3 60.a6 Re7+ 61.Kd6 Rf7 62.Rc6 Black resigned, Zappa 1.1 - Deep Fritz 8, Blitz:5, 2006.

10.b4!? Nf3+ (if 10...Bxb4 11.Qb3; best is 10...Bd4) 11.Qxf3 Qxa1 12.bxc5+ Ke7 13.Qb3 Nf6 14.Bb2 Qxb1+ 15.Ke2 Qxf1+ 16.Kxf1 Rf8 17.Qg3 Ke8 18.f5 Rf7 19.Qe5+ Kf8 20.Qxc7 Ne8 21.Qe5 gxf5 22.exf5 b6 23.Ba3 d6 24.Qh8+ Ke7 25.cxd6+ Kd8 26.g4 Be6 27.Ke1 Bxa2 28.Qa1 Bd5 29.Qd4 Bh1 30.Qc4 Rd7 31.Qg8 a6 32.g5 a5 33.c4 Rg7 34.Qe6 Raa7 35.d7 Raxd7 36.Qxb6+ Kc8 37.f6 Rgf7 38.Qxa5 Nc7 39.Qe5 Bb7 40.d4 Bg2 41.Kf2 Bc6 42.d5 Bxd5 43.cxd5 Rxd5 44.Qf4 Rdd7 45.Bb4 Kb7 46.Qc4 Nd5 47.Qb5+ Kc7 48.Bc5 Kc8 49.Qa6+ Kb8 50.Bd6+ Nc7 51.h3 Rd8 52.Qb5+ Kc8 53.Bxc7 Rxc7 54.Qf5+ Kb7 55.f7 Rcc8 56.Qxh7 Kc6 57.Qe4+ Kd6 58.Qd4+ Kc7 59.Qf4+ Black resigned, Junior 7 - Fritz 7, Utrecht, 2002; 

10.Nc3 (best) Kc6 11.Nd5 d6 12.Qg3 Qe6 13.fxe5 Qxe5 14.Qxe5 dxe5 15.b4 Bd6 16.Bb2 Ne7 17.c4 b6 18.Rc1 Nxd5 19.exd5+ Kd7 20.c5 bxc5 21.bxc5 Be7 22.Bxe5 Rf8 23.c6+ Kd8 24.Rxf8+ Bxf8 25.Rc3 Be7 26.Re3 h5 27.Bxc7+ Kxc7 28.Rxe7+ Kd6 29.Re8 Kxd5 30.Rg8 Bb7 31.Rxg6 Re8+ 32.Kf2 Bxc6 33.Rh6 Re5 34.d4 Rf5+ 35.Ke3 Rg5 36.g3 a5 37.a3 Bb5 38.Rh7 Kc4 39.Rf7 Kb3 40.Kf4 Rd5 41.Ke4 Be8 42.Kxd5 Bxf7+ 43.Ke5 Kxa3 44.d5 a4 45.d6 Be8 46.Kf6 Kb4 47.Ke7 Bb5 48.d7 Bxd7 49.Kxd7 a3 50.Ke6 a2 51.Kf5 a1=Q 52.Kg5 Qe5+ 53.Kh4 White resigned, DrunkenMaster 1.2 - Comet B48, Torneo tematico GaJero00-A, 2009


A little bit better might be 10.fxe5 Qxe5 although it did not make a difference in GeniusPawn - jmchess, FICS, 2000 which continued with 11.Nc3, anyway: 11...Nf6 12.d4 Bxd4 13.Bf4 Bxc3+ 14.bxc3 Qxe4+ 15.Kd1 d6 16.Qh4 Kf7 17.Kc1 Bf5 18.Qf2 Qc4 19.Rb1 Ne4 20.Qe3 Qxf1+ 21.Kb2 Qxg2 22.Bh6 Qxh2 23.Ka1 Qxc2 24.Rc1 Qa4 25.Qd3 Rae8 26.Qd5+ Be6 27.Rf1+ Ke7 28.Bg5+ Kd7 29.Rf7+ Kc8 White resigned.

The question is, can Black respond to 10.Nc3 by making the White capture of the Knight on e5 more difficult, if not impossible? The answer, as we shall see, is both yes and no

[to be continued]

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


I just reviewed a nice Russian language Jerome Gambit article with a balanced, not mocking, assessment of the opening (and a kind link to this blog, as well). It has several games that can be played over on the site, including ones by historical figures Alonzo Wheeler Jerome, Andres Clemente Vazquez, Henry Charlick and S.A. Sorensen; as well as modern regular visitors to this blog, Bill Wall and Philidor 1792.

Of interest, the site mentions analysis by A. Zherom, a reference I am not familiar with. (For Jerome Gambit analysis from Opening Traps by GM Ferzbery [Boris Vainstein] see this earlier blog post.)

Monday, September 19, 2016

Tournaments Update

The first round of the RedHotPawn Jerome Gambit thematic tournament is nearing completion - there is one game left, deep in a one-sided endgame - and it looks like SeinfeldFan91 (18 points) will advance from Group 1; procyk and rigidwithfear (each 12 points) will advance from Group 2; kristjan (15 points) will advance from Group 3; and junnujannu (15 points) will advance from Group 4. Good chess to all of you!

In the Giuoco Piano thematic tournament, I am (temporarily) in first place, with 12 points out of 16 games. With one game (with the Black pieces) yet to start, I am currently playing a Jerome Gambit - and my record with the Jerome so far is an odd 3 wins, 3 wins on time, and 2 losses.