THE nine carat gold FA Cup runners-up medal presented to Bolton Wanderers defender Ralph Banks is set to fetch up to £3,500 at auction.

The medal was presented to Banks after Bolton were beaten 4-3 by Blackpool at Wembley on May 2, 1953.

Then aged 33 and a Wanderers veteran, he played at full-back and had the unenviable task of stopping legendary England winger Stanley Matthews.

It looked like the Trotters would win the game when Lofthouse opened the scoring in the second minute but, despite two more goals from captain Willie Moir and left half Eric Bell, Bolton went down 4-3 after Blackpool’s Stan Mortensen scored a hattrick and Bill Perry snatched the winner in the 92nd minute.

The match went on to be named the Matthews Final thanks to the wing wizardry of the Blackpool star, who gave Banks a torrid time that afternoon.

It turned out to be Banks’ last match for the club.

The medal was sold by the family more than 10 years ago to a private collector who is now selling on the item.

Now, nearly 60 years later, his medal goes up for sale at Graham Budd Auctions at Sotheby’s, in London, on Monday when it is expected to fetch between £2,500 and £3,500.

In his book, Bolton Wanderers: A Complete Record, club historian Simon Marland said: “Ralph Banks, like his brother Tommy, was born and bred in Farnworth, less than three miles from Burnden Park.

”Without a doubt, Banks lost his most promising years through the war and his career was curtailed even further after the cessation of hostilities due to National Service.”

Ralph Banks made 104 league appearances for Bolton before handing over the number three shirt to his brother. After the 1953 final, Ralph Banks joined Aldershot.

Earlier this year a winner’s medal from the White Horse Final of 1923 between Bolton and West Ham went under the hammer for £8,640. Bolton won 2-0 and the medal belonged to Wanderers player Jimmy Seddon.