This is the official website of GM Atanas Kolev. Here you will find information about his career, achievements, tournament victories and current results, chess books written by GM Kolev, as well as private chess lessons.

Atanas Ivanov Kolev is a Bulgarian  chess grandmaster with more than 30 years of practice as a chess player and coach. He started at the age of 10 and became an international master (IM) in 1988. He won the grandmaster title (GM) in 1993 and can claim more than 60 victories in international chess tournaments throughout the world.

His highest FIDE rating was 2602, January 2012. GM Kolev has participated in many international tournaments around the world and has achieved a remarkable milestone – 61 victories. He played for the Bulgarian National Team four Olympiads and was a Champion of Bulgaria.

As a chess trainer he has been working since 2004 when became a coach of Bulgarian Women’s National Team and helped ex–World Champion GM Antoaneta Stefanova and some of the most famous Bulgarian Grandmasters (GM Kiril Georgiev, GM Vasil Spasov, etc).

In the last years Kolev works with talented young players. One of his students (Denitsa Dragieva, born 1996) became World Individual School champion in 2013 and the Bulgarian Chess Federation has proclaimed him the Honored Coach of 2013 as a sign of his great results.

Kolev and fellow Bulgarian grandmaster Kiril Georgiev are co-authors of The Sharpest Sicilian, a book about the Najdorf Variation of the Sicilian Defense, which was published in 2007. The book follows the structure of another Chess Stars publication, The Safest Sicilian. Five years after the first edition, the book was completely rewritten and redesigned The Sharpest Sicilian-2012.

Atanas and Macedonian grandmaster Trajko Nedev are co-authors of The Easiest Sicilian, a book about the Sveshnikov Variation of the Sicilian, which was published in 2008.

After receiving a green card in a category entitled “aliens of extraordinary ability”, he currently lives in San Jose  and transmits his experience and knowledge in chess to many students at different ages.

Grandmaster Kolev speaks fluently English, Spanish, Russian, Serbian and Bulgarian (native).

It is important to have a competent chess coach who cares!



Student’s Quotes

Dr. Eric Moskow : ”Listen I can not wait for you to come . It is clear that you can help me”; ”We are your friends and you did great work.”

Michael Chor : ”Thank you Atanas!!  You’re the best Coach Kevin has had 🙂  You review and annotate his games, you “get hard” on him at the right time, you always send study materials.  My wife and I hope for Kevin to become a GM one day.”

Steve Dimopoulos : ”I enjoyed the lesson Atanas.”