Private Coaching

The MCC is one of the strongest chess clubs in Australia. As such there are numerous master level players and experienced coaches available to coach individuals. 
Master coaching generally costs between $30-$40 per hour, or $60 for two hours. The MCC highly recommends:

Get the most from coaching

Coaching alone will not make you a strong player, and though many players and parents expect a coach to wave a magic wand and turn a player from novice to master in one hour a week, it isn't going to happen! Here is what you need to do to get the most out of a coach:

  • Ask for a study plan. A good coach will be able to recommend suitable topics, books and time allocations for your level. 
  • Play lots of chess, and try to discuss the games with your opponent. At first it might be difficult to follow everything a strong opponent says when discussing your game, but over time these comments will begin to make more and more sense. 
  • Don't overdo one area of the game. For most new chess players, this area is openings. Try to give an equal balance to end game, middle game, positional, opening and tactical (chess puzzles) study. 
  • Visit the bookshop, and ask for a recommendation for a player of your level.

FIDE Master Grant Szuveges:

Grant is a former President of the Melbourne Chess club. Now 37, he retired from tournament chess
after achieving his FIDE Master title around 10 years ago. Grant was coached by current Australian champion and Grandmaster Darryl Johansen when younger and his positional, classic style provides a foundation that many young players lack. He is a friendly and energetic guy with 15 years coaching experience. 

Grant is based in Moonee Ponds. He can be contacted on 0401-925-075 or <>

FIDE Master Michael Baron: 

Michael Baron has been one of the strongest players in Australia for the last 20 years. Born in Moscow, Michael received elite coaching overseas before coming to Melbourne in his teens. He has a complete knowledge of the game and anyone serious about their chess is encouraged to inquire about his availability. Michael is a regular at the MCC Allegro every Saturday and we'd welcome you to come down and have a chat with him there (James will likely be there too!).

Contact Michael at

Michael is based in Caulfield.

International Master Igor Goldenberg:

Igor is a four time Victorian Champion, long-standing International Master ("IM") and has also won the Melbourne Chess Club Championship. His training is tailored to the individual needs of the student and often involves game-analysis focussed on improving Endgame skills, Tactical and Combinational Skills, Calculation Technique, Positional and Strategical understanding as well as Opening preparation. You can contact Igor at: or on 0417 519 733.

Igor is based in South Caulfield.

FIDE Master Bill Jordan

Finally, improving kids and adults should read a chess book as well as playing. The MCC bookshop has chess books for children and adults on all aspects of the game, including various specific opening manuals and well regarded beginners books. A catalogue will be up soon.