Saturday, February 4, 2017

Jerome Gambit: "Cliff Hardy" Spectacular

Another "Cliff Hardy" spectacular! A very interesting Jerome Gambit played with a time control of one minute for each player. (That turns out to be 1 or 2 seconds a move.)

Again, I present notes from Kevin, with some information from his email. I have added diagrams. 

I couldn't resist sending you this game in the "Charlick" variation, played in the famous Jerome Gambit game, Charlick-Mann, correspondence, 1881. I am from Adelaide in Australia. Our official chronological State Championship winner board ( ) starts with "1868-93 H. Charlick 1894 J. Hilton; 1895 W. J. McArthur..." and ends with "2016 Alan Goldsmith" but there is an interesting wordy preface to the "1868-93 H. Charlick" bit:
"Historical Prelude - Henry Charlick (1845-1916) was acknowledged chess champion of S.A. [South Australia] for 25 years, by common consent and by his pre-eminent ability. He confirmed this rank by winning the Australian title in Adelaide in 1887 and by taking second place the next year in Melbourne. State Championship tournaments began in 1894, after the foundation of the S.A.C.A [South Australian Chess Association] in 1892, but Charlick never took part in these contests for the title he had relinquished."

Kevin Sheldrick - NN
1 0, FICS, 2017 

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 7.Qd5+ Kf8

Charlick-Mann, correspondence, 1881, went 7...Ke8, ...1-0, 72.

8.Qxc5+ d6 9.Qe3 Nf6 10.0-0 Bd7?!

Black is now slightly better but Stockfish likes the manoeuvre 10...Kf7!, intending to artificially castle, with a clear advantage for black.


Stockfish slightly prefers 11. d4.


Doesn't do much - 11...Qe8 or 11...c5 are better.

12.d4 Qe7?!

Looks good but 12...Bb5 is better - a few mistakes around here but I guess this is "one minute each" chess 😃.


13.e5! is a little better.

13...Kg8 14.f5 

Now I am equal.

14...Nf8 15.e5 de Ne8??

16...Rae8! or 16...Ng4 are better, though I am not losing a pawn after 16...Ng4 17.Qg3!, since 17...Nxe5?? loses to 18.f6.


17.Nd5! was crushing, with the threat of pushing the f-pawn.


17...Bc6 was necessary to keep black in the game, now the Jerome pawns are too strong.

18.Be3 Qc6 19.Qf4

OK, but 19.Nd5! was even stronger.

19...a6 20.e6 Bc8?!

Sacrificing with 20...Nxe6 was better but still losing for black.

21.Bd4 Nd6 22.Qg3?!

22.f6! was killing.

22...Ne8 23.f6 Nxe6 24.f7+ Kh7 25.Qd3+ g6 26.fxe8=Q Rxe8?

26...Qxe8 is better, though 27.Nd5 is still winning for white.

27.Rf7+ Kg8

27...Ng7 would still lead to a quick mate e.g. 28.Rxg7+ Kh8 29.Rxg6+ Kh7 30.Rg7+ Kh8 31.Qh7 mate

28.Qxg6 Ng7 29.Qxg7 mate

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