311. Muhammad Ali

Mohammad Ali

We regard Muhammad Ali as the greatest sporting figure of 20th century.  His outspoken nature on controversial issues brought him many problems. But, this olympic gold medalist never cared about anything. This former American heavy weight champion boxer lives in the hearts of his fans, even after his death.

He used to say,” I know where I am going, I know the truth and I don’t have to be what you want me to be. Suffer now by severe training and live the rest of your life as a champion. He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life. You float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. Service to others is the rent you pay for your room on earth. A man who views  the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of life”.

His words inspired many people. They tried to walk in his foot steps. After his olympic victory, he was heralded as an American hero. He was a political, social religious activist. Till end, he was the beloved human as the world knew.

Mohammad Ali had an unique personality based on self-belief and strong convictions. In 1999, he was crowned “Sportsman of the Century“, by Sports Illustrated. He won the World Heavy weight championship three times, North American Boxing Federation championship apart from Olympic gold medal.  He received  a special one-off award from the BBC at its annual BBC Sports Personality of the Century award. He was named as the “Kentucky Athlete of the century“. He received Presidential medal of freedom at a white house ceremony.

After retirement, Ali devoted much of his time to philanthropy. He announced that he had Parkinson’s disease in 1984, a degenerative neurological condition, and was involved in raising funds for the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center in Phoenix, Arizona. Mohammad Ali died on 3rd June 2016, from a respiratory illness, a condition that was complicated by Parkinson’s disease. Nobody can forget this eccentrically genius boxer.

 

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