When historians of the game reminisce about the Welsh conveyor belt of world class fly-halves the name of Malcolm Dacey will perhaps not be discussed. Morgan, John, Bennett and Dacey's successor Jonathan Davies were all streets ahead in terms of individual brilliance but the Swansea fly-half was nevertheless a player of skill, imagination and bravery. Like all Welsh backs of the Eighties he would have given anything to play behind the street-wise packs of the Glory Years - the previous decade. He made his debut against the old enemy England at Cardiff in a 13-13 draw and marked his arrival on the international scene with a drop goal - a Dacey speciality.
This was followed by victories over Scotland and Ireland. Sadly, the Championship could not be taken with Wales losing 16-9 in a niggly game against France. In his next game against Romania in Bucharest, Dacey found himself surrounded by six new caps - he was somewhat of a veteran himself with 4. Dacey's half back partner and both centres were new boys and inevitably the new outfit did not gel. Wales lost 24-6. Against Scotland in 1984, with Terry Holmes still injured, Dacey had another new scrum-half in the form of Mark Douglas. The rot did not stop and the Scots won 15-9. The Championship was salvaged with victories over Ireland in Dublin and England at Twickenham, but defeat to France in Cardiff meant that for the first time in 21 years Wales had lost both home Championship games.
In the England game, Dacey was again paired with Terry Holmes and looked far more at ease with his game - he also kicked two drop goals. However, he would get another new partner against Australia in the form of David Bishop. It made little difference as Wales were demolished 28-9. From this point the Swansea man seemed to slip away. Gareth Davies was recalled to take over at number ten and another Davies, Jonathan, would soon make the jersey his own. Dacey meanwhile did make further appearances. Against Tonga he switched to fullback, scoring three penalties. He would do so again against France when replacing the kicking machine Paul Thorburn.
His final game came in the 1987 World Cup against Tonga. He played in his usual position with his Swansea team mate Robert Jones as scrum-half. It was his only appearance in a tournament which for Wales really belonged to Jonathan Davies. (John Lovell)
Dacey played his club rugby for Bonymaen RFC, Swansea RFC, Cardiff RFC and Pontypool RFC.