World U16 Champion (1990); USSR Junior Champion (1990); World U18 Champion (1992). Sakaev was awarded the IM title in 1990 and the GM title in 1992. In 1999, he won the Russian championship. Competed in the World Championship Knockout contests of 1999, 2000, 2001-2 (round 3) and 2004 (round 3). Also competed in the World Cups held in 2005 (placing 16th), 2007 and 2009 (round 3).
Sakaev represented Russia as a reserve at the Olympiads of 1994, 1998 and 2000, winning a team bronze and 2 team golds respectively, and placing 4th for his board in 1998 and 2000. In 2001, he won individual gold and team silver playing for Russian in the World Team Championship.
He played in the European Club Cup from 1996 until 2006 inclusive, and from 2008 until 2010 inclusive. During this time he won 3 individual silver medals in 2000, 2004 and 2010; a team silver in 2000; and 2 team bronzes in 1996 and 2006. His greatest team successes were in the Russian Premier League in which he played from 1992 until 2010 inclusive, except for 1994, 1996 and 1998. His medal tally in the Russian League was 2 individual and 4 team golds, 2 individual and 3 team silvers, 2 individual and 4 team bronzes, most of these medals being won while he was with St Petersburg (1999-2003; 2009-2010) and Ural Sverdlovsk (2004-2007). In 1991, he won individual and team gold playing 2nd reserve for the USSR in the World U26 Team Championship. He also represented Russia in the 2004 Russia-China summit matches.
In January 2005, Sakaev reached his peak rating - 2677 - and his peak world ranking - 27.
A chess author and theoretician, he wrote:
- <Expert's Guide to the 7.Bc4 Gruenfeld>
- <Latest Trends in the Semi Slav: Anti-meran> (with Semko Semkov) and
Nikita Smirnov: I am reading his book he did in 2003 with Semko Semkov "The Queens Gambit Accepted" and I really like this book very much.I like Sakaev's style of analysing the position.When I am reading I always remmember Botvinnik.
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