Sunday, January 1, 2017

Jerome Gambit: Jump!

I thought I would start 2017 with a Jerome Gambit game that got me chuckling. White is played by shugart, who has over 120 games in The Database. The time control is "lightning", and I am tempted to say that the players should know better than to try the Jerome at that speed - but then I was reminded of a scene in the movie "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" where the two title characters are trapped at the edge of a cliff, and their only "escape" is to leap off, into the water below...

Butch Cassidy: Alright. I'll jump first. 
Sundance Kid: No. 
Butch Cassidy: Then you jump first. 
Sundance Kid: No, I said. 
Butch Cassidy: What's the matter with you? 
Sundance Kid: I can't swim. 
Butch Cassidy: Are you crazy? The fall will probably kill you. 
Sundance Kid: Oh... 

shugart - kisa
lightning, FICS, 2016

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

Play the Jerome Gambit?
The time clock will probably kill you, anyhow.

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Kf8 

7.Qxe5 d6 8.Qg3 Nf6 9.Nc3 c6 10.d3 h6 11.Be3 Bb4 

We are getting to the part of the game where the clock dictates "Move first. Think later."

12.O-O Ba5 13.f4 d5 14.e5 

For example, White has a threat - but Black has an equal one. Given a few more ticks of the clock, White would have found the safer 14.Bc5+ Kg8 15.e5 


Fixing things for White, by missing the fork 14...d4. This move sugggests that time is now on White's side, and as long as he stays ahead on the clock he will win, regardless of what is happening on the board.

15.bxc3 Ne8 16.f5 Rg8 

17.Bc5+ Kf7 18.e6+

It is a bit impertinent to suggest the alternative 18.Qg6#, as White is not going to win via checkmate. He doesn't have to.

18...Kf6 19.Bd4+ 

Likewise, 19.Qg6+ Ke5 20.Rae1# is irrelevant. 

19...Ke7 20.Bc5+

It is the height of rudness to suggest, instead, that 20.Qg6 or 20.f6+ would have led to the win of Black's Rook. White has it all under control.

Black forfeited on time

That's okay. Time ran out on 2016, too. Happy New Year!

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