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Muhammad Ali has passed away

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Muhammad-Ali

A true legend has passed away. Muhammad Ali has died at the age of 74.

The former world heavyweight boxing champion, one of the world’s best-known sportsmen, died at a hospital in the US city of Phoenix, Arizona, after being admitted on Thursday.

He was suffering from a respiratory illness, a condition that was complicated by Parkinson’s disease.

Ali was one of the most recognized sports figures of the past 100 years, crowned “Sportsman of the Century” by Sports Illustrated and “Sports Personality of the Century” by the BBC. He also wrote several best-selling books about his career, including The Greatest: My Own Story and The Soul of a Butterfly.

Originally known as Cassius Clay, he began training at 12 years old and at the age of 22 won the world heavyweight championship in 1964 from Sonny Liston in a stunning upset. Shortly after that bout, Ali joined the Nation of Islam and changed his name. He converted to Sunni Islam in 1975, and 30 years later began adhering to Sufism.

Ali remains the only three-time lineal world heavyweight champion; he won the title in 1964, 1974, and 1978. Between February 25, 1964 and September 19, 1964 Muhammad Ali reigned as the undisputed heavyweight boxing champion.

Nicknamed “The Greatest”, Ali was involved in several historic boxing matches. Notable among these were the first Liston fight, three with rival Joe Frazier, and “The Rumble in the Jungle” with George Foreman, in which he regained titles he had been stripped of seven years earlier.

Ali had a cameo role in the 1962 film version of Requiem for a Heavyweight, and he starred in the short-lived Broadway musical, Buck White (1969). In 1963, Ali released an album of spoken word on Columbia Records titled I Am the Greatest, and in 1964, he recorded the song “Stand by Me”.

Ali appeared in the documentary film Black Rodeo (1972) riding both a horse and a bull. His autobiography The Greatest: My Own Story, written with Richard Durham, was published in 1975. In 1977 the book was adapted into a film called The Greatest, in which Ali played himself and Ernest Borgnine played Angelo Dundee.

The film Freedom Road, made in 1978, features Muhammad Ali in a rare acting role as Gideon Jackson, an ex-slave in 1870s Virginia who gets elected to the U.S. Senate in Washington, D.C., and battles other former slaves and white sharecroppers to keep the land they have tended all their lives. On the set of Freedom Road Ali met Canadian singer-songwriter Michel, and subsequently helped create Michel’s album entitled The First Flight of the Gizzelda Dragon. and the hour-long television show With Love From Muhammad Ali

Ali was married four times and had seven daughters and two sons.

Via: BBC, Wiki

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