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Former Welsh keeper consigns Gordon Banks' England match-worn shirt for auction at Ewbank's
Former Wales international goalkeeper Dave Hollins with the match-worn shirt he swapped with Gordon Banks after the game between Wales and England on October 12, 1963.

On February 28, Ewbank’s Auctions are to offer for sale an international goalkeeper’s shirt worn by the late great Gordon Banks (1937-2019).

Consigned by Dave Hollins, the Wales keeper in the same match, with whom Banks swapped the shirt at the end of the game, it comes from the October 12, 1963 British Championship fixture between Wales and England at Ninian Park, Cardiff, three years before Banks completed a golden run at the World Cup for champions England, starting every game.

Alf Ramsey’s team, under the captaincy of Jimmy Armfield, put four goals past Hollins, two from the boot of Bobby Smith and one each from Jimmy Greaves and Bobby Charlton, in front of a 48,000 strong crowd. Wales failed to score.

Although he had played for the Wales under-23 team before, this was Hollins’ debut for the main side.

“We had quite a forceful team ourselves, including John Charles, a giant of a player who played for Leeds and Juventus, and Cliff Jones who played for Tottenham. But the difference was Bobby Charlton, who really was in another league compared to the rest.”

Dave remembers the first goal (shown below) very well. “The ball had come right across near to the far post and I tried to get there but it was to late, the ball had travelled too fast.”

Alongside Banks in that match were another three players who would take England to victory in the World Cup Final on July 30, 1966 at Wembley: Bobby Moore, Bobby Charlton and Ray Wilson.

The scoreline was decisive, but well short of the 8-3 drubbing England went on to give Ireland in the second round, with both Greaves and Terry Paine scoring hat tricks.

Coincidentally, the BBC commentator for the match was Kenneth ‘They think it’s all over … it is now’ Wolstenholme.

“At the end, Gordon, who had suffered a nosebleed, came up to me and said ‘Dave, do you mind if I have your shirt?’ – he collected them – and I was happy to oblige. He really was a very nice man indeed.”

Another collector of shirts was the Brazilian keeper Gilmar, with whom Hollins swapped shirts during Wales’s South American tour in 1962. That is also part of the consignment at Ewbank’s, along with a Welsh international jumper from the game against Hungary in 1962-3, and an Irish international jersey worn by Bobby Irvine in a 1964-65 fixture.

“Gilmar was as massive a celebrity as Gordon Banks. He had played in the greatest Brazilian side ever and I think he played well over 100 games for the national team. Just like with Banks, it was him who came up to me.”

Dave recalls the tour well. “We played in Chile, Mexico and two games in Brazil. We were paid a £60 retainer, £4 for a win and £2 a draw.”

Hollins had been thinking about selling the shirts for some time and finally consigned them to Ewbank’s in late January.

“It was as I was cataloguing them for sale that news of Gordon Banks’ death came on the news, and there I was with his England jersey in my hands,” said Ewbank’s specialist Alastair McCrea.

Hollins, who was born in Bangor in North Wales when his father played for the local team, played 11 times for Wales between 1962 and 1966. He enjoyed a successful career with clubs including Brighton & Hove Albion, Newcastle United, Nottingham Forest and Aldershot Town to name a few. He played against some wonderful players including Pele, George Best, Sir Stanley Matthews, Tom Finney and Bobby Moore.

And the best in his opinion. “Without a doubt, George Best, a real phenomenon like no other.”

Dave is the older brother of former England international footballer John Hollins, and the uncle of TV presenter Chris Hollins. His father and grandfather were also professional footballers.

Still showing mud and bloodstains from the game, the framed shirt comes complete with the match programme and is estimated at £2,500-3,500.

Live online bidding is available to potential buyers anywhere in the world via the Bid Live button on the home page of Ewbank’s website. Bidders should register at least 24 hours in advance of the sale, which starts at 9.30am on the 28th.

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