How I became an International Master

Most of you are surely accustomed to this opening line – “Hello this is FIDE Master Valeri Lilov…” Guess what, that is no more. I am now officially an International Master and would like to thank you all for the great support in my chess career. This title was officially awarded to me at the 84th FIDE Congress in Tallinn, Estonia.

To achieve the title, I participated in three very strong Open tournaments earlier this year and managed to score my third and last IM norm. It was 27 games and many strong matches I played during one month of this year’s chess summer.

In this week’s video I want to share with you one of my excellent games played in the Golden Sands Grand Open. My opponent was the experienced Grandmaster Boris Chatalbashev and I had white pieces as an advantage. The game was a nail biting encounter and one of the most critical in my chess career. This is because a loss would have reduced my chances to achieve a title norm. So, here is how the game went:

Overall, that game was really exciting for me and although it was far from being perfect, I learnt a lot of things from both my misses and the opponent’s mistakes. From now on, I will be fighting for the three Grandmaster norms and 70 ELO rating points that are keeping me away for the highest title in chess!

Once more, thank you to all for the support on my road to mastery. In order to get some personalized training from an International master, you can visit Smile You can also watch my instructional Free Videos on YouTube, please subscribe to stay abreast of the new developments – 


  • 3 years ago


    Awesome!!! I think u can easily get the gm title next!!! Perhaps even win the fide candidates!!!!!!!

  • 3 years ago


    Congratulations on your new title and thanks for sharing one of your matches with us; very enjoyable.  :)

  • 3 years ago


    Congratulations on you acomplishment! And you did it playing the English :) May your road to GM be an exciting and rewarding one!

  • 3 years ago


    Well done indeed!!

  • 3 years ago


    Well done sir! Congratulations. Smile (Where's the party hat emoticon when you need it?)

  • 3 years ago


    Well done!

  • 3 years ago


    very helpful and instructive commentary. thanks and congrats. 

  • 3 years ago



  • 3 years ago


    Congratulations! Keep the hardwork on!

  • 3 years ago


    hey great job, congratulations!

  • 3 years ago


    this is great :)


  • 3 years ago


    Well deserved sir.  Always enjoyed your instructions, lessons and analysis.  Best Regards, EddieB

  • 3 years ago


    Cool! Congratulations!

  • 3 years ago


    congratulations IM tiger!!! well deserved!!!

  • 3 years ago


    Way to go. You were one of the first videos on that I watched. And I kept coming back for more. I have enjoyed all your videos, they have been very helpful and positive. I look forward to you becoming a Grandmaster soon.

  • 3 years ago

    NM Petrosianic

    Very nice, congrats!

  • 3 years ago


    Congratulations! I have learned so much from your videos. I'm glad you're going to keep doing them.

  • 3 years ago

    NM SamCopeland


  • 3 years ago



  • 3 years ago


    Very instructive points, Valeri! I didn't know you had a YouTube channel, I will definitely look for it!

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