Sunday, December 24, 2017

Jerome Gambit: Overlooking Something in the Notes

When presenting a chess game, it is easy to overlook something in a suggested line. Modern annotators have the help of computer chess engines, but 130 years ago, they were, of course, not available.

From the Adelaide Observer, Saturday, June 14, 1884 (page 44) column CHESS, "Chess in Adelaide". Notes from the column, by Mr. E. Govett, of the Semaphore Chess club, have been changed from descriptive notation to algebraic notation. Diagrams have been added.- Rick

Charlick, H. - Cooke, W.
Adelaide Chess Club, 1884


This is a sacrifice of the same kind as that in the previous game
[Cooke - Charlick, Adelaide, 1884, a Charlick Gambit, see next blog post - Rick]. It is a sacrifice of sound chess to benevolence.

1...e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+

This is good after the fourth more. White obtains two Pawns for his piece, and has withal a fairly open position. 

5...Nxe5 6.Qh5+ Ng6 7.Qd5+ Ke8 8.Qxc5 b6 9.Qe3 Bb7 

10.d4 Nf6 11.Nc3 Qe7! 12.O-O 

We prefer 12.f3, as by the text White lays himself open to the loss of a Pawn or two with no compensating advantage. 


But Black does not avail himself of it. He should play 12...Nxe4 when one of the two following continuations would probably follow 13.Nxe4 (13.Nb5 0-0 [the columnist forgets that Black can no longer castle - Rick] 14.Nxc7 Rac8 15.Nb5 Rxf2 with a fine game [I have corrected move numbers - Rick. The Saturday June 21, 18814 CHESS column in the Adelaide Observer - the next week - noted "In the Jerome Gambit, published last week, the note to Black's 12th move should have had the moves numbered 12, 13, 14, &c., instead of 16, 17, 18, &c." There was no correction, however, about the suggestions to castle - Rick] 13... Bxe4 14.c4 0-0 and he should win [But Black is still unable to castle - Rick]. 

13.Qg3 Nf6 14.Bg5 d6 

Disastrous. He should play 14...Qf7

15.e5 dxe5 16.dxe5 Nxe5 17.Rfe1 Qf7 18.Rxe5+ 

And finishes off with no difficulty. 

18...Kf8 19.Rae1 Qg6 20.Nb5 Rd8 21.Nxc7 Kf7 

22.Qb3+ Nd5 23.Nxd5 Bxd5 24.Rxd5 Rxd5 25.Qxd5+ Kf8 

White mates in two moves.

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