This article is about Muhammad Ali - possibly the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time.
Born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr in 1942, Muhammad Ali is still one of the most famous men in sports history.
Very fast for a heavyweight, he boasted that he could 'float like a butterfly and sting like a bee', and often accurately predicted which round he would finish an opponent in.
After a successful amateur career which saw him become AAU, Golden Gloves and Olympic light heavyweight champion, he notched up 19 wins as a pro.
At just 22 years of age, he fought seemingly unbeatable champion Sonny Liston as an 8-1 underdog. He won the title when Liston failed to rise for the seventh round. He later gave Liston a rematch, beating him soundly in the first round. He also successfully defended his title against former champion Floyd Patterson.
In 1964 he converted to Islam, and changed his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali. Ali refused to fight in the Vietnam War in 1967, and was convicted of draft evasion. He was also stripped of the title.
He returned to the ring in 1970 and fought for the heavyweight championship against Joe Frazier in 1971 in what was billed the 'Fight Of The Century'. Ali was unsuccessful, but challenged Frazier again two years later in a non title bout. Ali won a 12 round decision and the right to fight new champion George Foreman inZaire.
Foreman, like Sonny Liston before him, seemed invincible. In the battle dubbed the 'Rumble In The Jungle', Ali defied the odds and knocked out Foreman in the eighth round. He then won a third gruelling battle with Frazier in 'The Thrilla In Manila'.
He lost his title to Leon Spinks, but then regained it by beating Spinks to become the first man to win the title three times.
After retiring in 1979, he returned to challenge Larry Holmes for the title, and suffered his only career knockout. He finally retired in 1981 with a record of 57-5 (37 knockouts)
Check out the author’s other blogs: san jose jobs and marketing jobs bay area. Matthew Tolfree is the webmaster at http://www.greatboxers.co.uk,Â a site featuring biographies and videos of the greatest boxers of all time, and http://www.how2playguitar.co.uk, a great resource for beginners and experienced guitarists alike, featuring free lessons, twelve fret scale and argpeggio diagrams, finger exercises and backing tracks.
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