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 Muhammad Ali Biography

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تاريخ التسجيل : 03/03/2008
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مُساهمةموضوع: Muhammad Ali Biography   الأربعاء يونيو 10, 2009 7:57 am




Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. popularly known as 'Muhammad Ali', was a boxer, who literally slaughtered any competitor he met in the boxing ring and was the worst nightmare for almost every one he had boxing match with, was born to Cassius Sr. and Odessa on January 17 1942, in Louisville, Kentucky.

From his childhood, Cassius had a dream of becoming a heavyweight champion. But had no idea that his boxing career will start in an unexpected way. In an incidence his bike was stolen at the Columbia Auditorium (in 1954). Twelve years old Cassius and his friends were at the Auditorium when he came to know that his bike was stolen, Cassius was so angry that he told the policeman (Mr. Martin, who was handling bike theft case) that he would never leave the person who stole his bike and would beat him. Understanding the situation, the policeman warned Cassius that he was too young to fight the thief and told him to prepare well and learn boxing before breaking down on the thief. The policeman even suggested one good boxing trainer's name 'Fred Stoner' to young Cassius, so that at least this boy wouldn't go on a search for the person who stole his bike.

Cassius was so serious about getting into boxing and had prepared himself so that he joined the training with Fred Stoner. He prepared himself so well that within few weeks; he was ready for his first professional boxing match and also showed his talent. Further, for about six years, Cassius registered consecutive wins in the Kentucky Golden Gloves Championships every year. He also won two 'Amateur Athletic Union Championship' titles and two 'National Golden Gloves Championship' boxing titles during this period. With all this and his determination, Cassius made it sure that he was one of the possible and high-flying contenders of the future world championship.

It is said that he had more than a hundred amateur boxing sessions when he was under training. His dedication was at such a high level that he never wished to go for any job other than training himself in boxing. His passion for boxing was surely enough to make him work hard and take him to a place, which was far different than hundreds of other young amateur boxers.

Cassius then set his target for the light-heavyweight category boxing matches. In 1960, he claimed a gold medal in light-heavyweight boxing match at the summer Olympics in Rome. He smashed his competitor (Zbigniew Pietrzykowski of Poland) with a 5-0 decision on his side.

After coming back from Rome, Cassius himself experienced inhuman racism when a white waitress refused to serve him at a restaurant, which was meant only for white people (PLEASE note: NOT all the white people hated black people, there were some who do not like black people and today also such group exists, similarly there was and is a group of white people who do not hate black people). As white people hated black, his victory in Olympics incited few white people and as a result Cassius faced the situation where he had no other choice than to fight with those people. After those incidences, fuming Cassius was so angry that he threw gold medal into the Ohio River. From then onwards, he decided to jump into professional boxing matches full-fledged. He improved on some key areas to get into real action and registered first couple of wins of his professional life within few months.

When Cassius was taking training for one of his forthcoming match, he met the Nation of Islam members Captain Sam and Malcolm X (at Miami mosque). Malcolm created a deep impression on Cassius's mind and attracted him towards the Islam. In 1964 when Cassius became the new World Heavyweight Champion after knocking down Sonny Liston, he announced that he had accepted the Islam and had changed his name to Clay X, where X was an unknown name. When he announced his decision, he received a countrywide response and was given a new name 'Muhammad Ali'.

Louisville Sponsoring Group, which was led by local rich white businessman, played a role of sponsor for Ali and trainer Angelo Dundee was appointed as his veteran trainer. Dundee played an important role in developing a new boxing style for Ali. Ali formulated and even adopted new boxing tactics, according to him, he was a 'Headhunter' and never took a chance with body shots; all he tried was to keep his body away from the reach of his competitor and tried to hit him as hard as possible. The second style that Ali adopted was 'Dancing in the ring', for that he had developed his own rhythm and used to shuffle everywhere inside the ring. He used his strong legs very effectively to move faster and that to in his own dancing style, his agility also helped him many a times to give a good punch on the competitors face and collect some valuable points. Ali's new style was called as 'Ali Shuffle’ that included a perfect combination of his footwork and tactics to knockout the competitor.

The best part of Ali's boxing career was the time when he used to make certain announcements before entering the ring. Normally, at time of match and in some similar situations, the boxer never speaks even a single word, but Ali had his own ideas, he was the person who spoke the most while/before entering the ring, most of the times he claimed the time he would take to knockout his competitor. His most famous claim was 'Ali is the GREATEST' and to prove the same he would say that 'To prove I am great, he will fall within eight', this was not only a claim, but he did actually knocked out everyone he had claimed to prove it to be true.

At the time of Vietnam War in 1967, when Ali refused to get induced in the Armed Services stating that his religion did not allow him fight against anyone, he had stated that he had nothing to do with the war, and had no enmity with those who were fighting against his country. His statements and stance caused people of the whole country get angry over him and they demanded his license for boxing to be cancelled. Finally the decision was taken to strip down Ali's license from him. His last professional boxing match was against Ernie Terrel whom Ali had knocked down.

Ali's boxing license, his passport, his titles, medals etc. were stripped off from him for about two and a half year period. During this period, he was facing court trial and had lost it. The government and also all the people in the country banned his any activity. He was not allowed to do anything he wanted to as a protest of his stance.

After the period of two and a half years, Ali wanted to make a comeback in the boxing world, for that he staged two fights, first was against Jerry Quarry (which Ali won easily by knocking down Jerry in only three rounds) and the second was against undefeated champion 'Joe Frazier' which was held at Square Garden on March, 1971 and had lost in it. After this fight, Ali had lost his leg, his leg stopped functioning well and he could never again use his technique of dancing on his own rhythm in the ring. Ali, on the other hand, won a case in Supreme Court and he was granted access back to his boxing license, passport, medals etc.

In 1974, Ali regained his title of world heavyweight champion once again by knocking down Joe Frazier in twelve round fight. He won in the 'Rumble in the Jungle' on 30 October 1974 in Kinshasa, Zaire when he knocked out that time fearsome champion George Foreman in eight rounds. When Ali took on Foreman, he knew that he would not be able to use his dancing technique, so he used new method that allowed him to rest against the ropes and when Foreman came up on him, he used to swing off the ropes. The time when Foreman got tired, Ali attacked him and won the match by knocking him down.

One of the worst match ever took place in Ali's life was the match he played against Frazier in 1975 ('Thrilla in Manila' in Philippines). Ali and Frazier fought there tooth and nail, both of them were red with the blood on their body but in the end, Ali won the match when Frazier couldn't stand for the fifteenth round.

Muhammad Ali had written his name in golden ink in the history of boxing. He was the boxer who had a sensational track record of 53 wins out of 55 fights he had (35 out of which were knocked out by Ali). This type of career record is enough for anyone to become over confident over his talent. The same thing happened with Ali, in 1976 Olympic, he lost a match in a controversial decision with Leon Spinks, however, after few months the title was named back to Ali.

After ruling the boxing ring for about 27 long years, Ali announced his retirement on 27 June 1979. Even though, his heart never let him take retirement from the profession he loved to be in, more than anything else. The boxing gloves and the ring tempted him to push the retirement plans a little further; he took on a challenge from Larry Holmes who was a heavyweight champion. Ali lost the fight against Larry after getting more than 125 punches in last three rounds of their 11 round fight. After losing the fight with Larry, Ali still had no plans of retirement and in 1981, he again entered the ring this time against Trevor Berbick, but once again he lost the fight. Finally, this time in December 1981, Ali took retirement from boxing forever and never turned back to boxing ring.

In 1984 Ali was diagnosed with 'Parkinson's Disease', he suffered from muscle tremors and always found it difficult to speak. Ali, has done what no other boxer has ever done, he has created history in his own style. Ali's final statistics are 56-5 out of which he recorded 37 Knockouts and 19 times he was successful in defending his titles. He ruled the World Heavyweight Championship for three times.
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Muhammad Ali Biography
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