Friday, March 2, 2018


Just bumped into the website LAPOC - Learn and Play Online Chess, where players are encouraged to "Trip up your opponent with a clever gambit".

Examples are given such as:

"Fry White's Liver in the Two Knights Gambit"

"Fried Liver Attack - Drag the Black King to the Center"

"Counter Attack White with the Dangerous Wilkes-Barre"

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

The Jerome Gambit: The Eternal Question of Draws

When you play a wild and crazy opening with White like the Jerome Gambit, are you willing to settle for a draw? When you defend against such a reckless attack with Black, will you be happy splitting the point? Is a draw winning or losing a half point?

These questions are spurred by the following game. 

Wall, Bill - Guest2236463
PlayChess, 2018

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ 

4...Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.d4 Bxd4 7.Qxd4 Qf6 8.Qc5 

White avoids the threatened ...Nf3+, winning his Queen.

8...Qe7 9.Qd5+ Qe6 10.Qc5 Nc6 

Black decides, at least for the time being, to avoid a draw by repetition. That is reasonable, as he has an "objectively" won positioni.

11.f3 d6 12.Qf2 

White always has the option of flipping roles, and challenging Black to become the attacker.

12...Nf6 13. Nc3 Rf8 14. O-O Bd7 15. Be3 Kg8 


Come and get me.

16...Rae8 17.Rad1 Ne7 18. Rfe1 a6 19.a3

Attacking has its risks.

19...Nh5 20.f4 Qf7 21.f5 Bc6 22.Bd4 Nf6 

Black has rearranged his pieces, but hesitates to attack.

23.Re3 Nd7 24.Rg3 Ne5 25.Rd2 Kh8 26.Re3

Perhaps spurred by the clock, perhaps by nerves, Black now decides to go for the draw.

26...Nc4 27.Rg3 Ne5 28.Re3 Nc4 29.Rg3 Ne5



Monday, February 26, 2018

Jerome Gambit: Old Friends

The following game has a line of play that brings together "old friends" along the way to White's victory.

Wall, Bill - Guest901255, 2017

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 h6 

The Semi-Italian opening. Black wants to keep a knight off of g5, even at the cost of a tempo and the possible weakening of his Kingside.

4.O-O Nf6 5.Nc3 Bc5 6.Bxf7+ 

The Semi-Italian Four Knights Jerome Gambit. (Welcome, Knights.)

6...Kxf7 7.Nxe5+ Nxe5 8.d4 Bxd4 9.Qxd4 d6 

I think I have been in this position almost 20 times. More to the point, Bill has been here several times as well.

10.f4 Nc6 11.Qd3 Rf8 12.Bd2 Kg8 13.Rae1 Bd7 14.Rf3 

"Jerome pawns"? Check.
Backed by White's two Rooks? Check.
Black castles-by-hand? Check.


Impetuous attack on the White Queen? Check. (Oh, how we have missed you.)

15.Qc4+ d5 16.Qxb4 dxe4 17.Nxe4 Nxe4 18.Qxe4 

White is a pawn ahead. The opposite-colored Bishops hint at a possible drawn endgame - but in the current middle game they will benefit the attacker.

18...Bc6 19.Qe6+ Kh8 20.Rd3 Qf6 21.Qxf6 Rxf6 22.Re7


Black does not want to give up another pawn, but this move allows White to put deadly pressure on g7.

23.Rg3 Bd5 24.Rgxg7 Be4 25.Bc3 Black resigned