Benoni Defense With IM Valeri Lilov

Topics: Benoni Instructor: IM Valeri Lilov Level: Intermediate
The Benoni Defense is dynamic and dangerous...against White's 1.d4 opening. It can be the center of your opening repertoire that can rattle White's not-so-well-thought plans in mere few moves!


What You Will Get in this Course

Video Lessons

Video Lessons

This Course contains video lessons to guide you through its content.
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Repertoire Trainer

Repertoire Trainer

Study, analyze or drill the repertoire in the course. Play one side while the computer replies with the moves on the theory.
Chess Games

Games Database

This course includes a database of chess games played by masters to see the theory "in action".

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9 Lessons
3 Hours of video
91 Variations to learn
122 Games in database

Course Outline

  • Chapter 1. Miscellaneous Lines I
  • Chapter 2. Miscellaneous Lines II
  • Chapter 3. g3 Variation
  • Chapter 4. Nf3 Variation
  • Chapter 5. Nf3 Variation Part II
  • Chapter 6. e4 Variation
  • Chapter 7. f4 Variation
  • Chapter 8. e4 Nf3 Variation
  • Chapter 9. Spassky Fischer

How to Play The Benoni Defense With IM Valeri Lilov

The Benoni Defense is dynamic and dangerous… against White’s 1.d4 opening. It can be the center of your opening repertoire that can rattle White’s not-so-well-thought plans in mere few moves!

Unbalanced pawn structure, imbalances on both sides of the board, and you are up for an unrelenting fight.

Perfect for short time-controls… and regardless of whatever position White plays for, Black imminently ends up better.

But the Benoni is inherently tricky to play for Black, with lots of sidelines and traps that White has at his disposal.

If you are prepared, you can match blow-for-blow White’s every move and even confuse him for good at times. If you are not, let’s prepare the coffin for your king now.

What you will learn:

  • d4-pawn stays put. White decides to put those 3 pawn soldiers up on the board and asks Black for a reaction. Should Black exchange the d-pawn or leave it as it is? If you do take it, White may have a sharp reply…learn what it is.
  • The e4-square fight. White occasionally chooses 6.Bf4 to target the weak d6-pawn. Black can turn that weakness into strength by putting a knight on the e5-square. Want to know how? Let Valeri show you.
  • Fianchettoed bishop first. Why does White fianchetto his kingside bishop first before playing e4? Black responds by putting the kingside rook on e8 targeting the e-pawn. What does White do next? Learn how to play against that.
  • White’s 7.Nd2 trick. White reroutes the f3-knight to the c4 square to target the backward d6 pawn, coupled with 9.Bf4! Let Valeri show you how Black can take a different approach and equalize by a knight and bishop maneuver in this position.
  • The adventurous f-pawn. White can push forward the f-pawn early on to put pressure on Black’s fianchettoed king. Black should instead mobilize his knight on the queenside…and check out White’s preparation on the queenside. More in Chapter 8.

IM Valeri Lilov (FIDE 2438)

Better known as Tiger Lilov is a professional chess coach and lecturer renowned for his personalized approach to training students and professional players from all over the world. Having been an active tournament player all his life, he has won many international open tournaments and championships including the European Individual School Chess Championship U10 (Moscow, 2000) and the Kulaga Memorial International Open (Minsk, 2007).