- 2 min read

My Experience at the Karen Asrian Memorial Tournament

img of My Experience at the Karen Asrian Memorial Tournament


My recent trip to Armenia wasn’t just a vacation—it was a chess pilgrimage! I participated in the prestigious Karen Asrian Memorial, a chess tournament that pushed me to my limits and left me with unforgettable memories.

The Tournament

The Karen Asrian Memorial is a tournament dedicated to a chess legend. GM Avetik Grigoryan wrote a fantastic article about him, which I highly advise you to read: In Memory of GM Karen Asrian. One of the tournament’s highlights was meeting Levon Aronian, a true chess superstar. I was fortunate to meet such a player in person.

The tournament format consisted of nine rounds spread over nine days. Each game was a marathon, lasting between 3 and 4.5 hours.

Karen asrian playing hall

My performance

Overall, this was my most robust performance yet. I beat a player rated over 2150 and even faced a Grandmaster in a classical chess game for the first time. While I achieved a dominant position, time pressure ultimately led to a bittersweet loss.

At the beginning of the tournament, I was rated 1803 Elo and was the 67th player over 73 according to the initial ranking. I finished with 3.5 points over 9, half a point more than my initial goal. I earned 34 fide elo points and a performance of 2000 elo! My final rank is 57th, meaning I had an excellent performance.

Karen Asrian play


Speaking of improvement, a big part of my chess journey wouldn’t have been possible without the Chessmood team. Their training platform helped me climb over 300 points in online blitz and rapid chess ratings. This translated into real-world results, allowing me to consistently defeat players rated around 2000 Elo. I also had the opportunity to meet them in person. I played in the tournament with IM David Shahinyan, who helped me improve recently. Furthermore, I could visit Chessmood’s office, discover their waiting room, and have a great barbecue with them!

ChessMood office


This Armenian adventure tested my skills and reminded me of the power of dedicated practice. It left me eager to return and continue my chess journey!

If you want to know more about what I discovered in Armenia besides chess, stay tuned for my next article! I would like to share some insights about the country and its culture.