American boxing icon Muhammad Ali passed away after 32-year battle with Parkinson’s disease in Phoenix, Arizona. He was 74.
He was former three times world heavyweight champion (1964, 1974 and 1978) who had record-setting boxing career, which had made him one of the best-known figures of the 20th century. He was also known globally for his civil rights activism.
About Muhammad Ali
- Born as Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. on January 17, 1942 in Louisville, Kentucky, US.
- He had started his boxing career at young age of 12 years. In 1964, at the age of 22 he had won the world heavyweight championship from Sonny Liston.
- In 1975, he had converted to Sunni Islam and changed his name to Muhammad Ali. 30 years later began adhering to Sufism.
- In 1967, he was stripped of his boxing title after refusing to be conscripted into US military, citing his religious beliefs and opposition to American involvement in the Vietnam War and was convicted.
- Later in 1971, US Supreme Court overturned his conviction. His actions as a conscientious objector to the war made him an icon for the larger counterculture generation.
- In boxing career, he was nicknamed The Greatest, and was involved in several historic boxing matches.
- Some of his notable matches were the first Liston fight, three with rival Joe Frazier, and one with George Foreman, in which he regained titles that were stripped in 1967.
- Honours: Sports Illustrated had crowned him as “Sportsman of the Century” and BBC had named him as “Sports Personality of the Century”.
- Books: He had written several best-selling books about his career including The Greatest: My Own Story and The Soul of a Butterfly.