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World pays tribute to Muhammad Ali on 78th birth anniversary

New Delhi, Jan 17 (IANS) As the world remembered the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time, Muhammad Ali, on his 78th birth anniversary on Friday, social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook became flooded with wishes.

Netizens on Friday shared Ali’s motivational story on social media of how, as a 12-year-old, he entered the boxing ring for the first time.

Born on January 17, 1942, as Cassius Marcellus Clay in Louisville, a small town in Kentucky alongside the Ohio river, Ali was the first to win the world heavyweight title three times. Ali passed away on June 3, 2016, at the age of 74.

Ali defeated every top heavyweight boxer in his era and was crowned the World Heavyweight Boxing champion thrice in addition to winning an Olympic gold medal at the Rome Olympics in 1960.

He was not loved for his amazing boxing skills alone, but also for his endearing beliefs.

He inspired millions with his words and actions.

He was inspired to become a boxer in 1954 at the age of 12 when his red-and-white Schwinn bicycle was stolen and the young Cassius Clay approached police officer Joe Martin to report.

Ali told the officer that he was going to bash up the thief if he could lay his hands on him.

Joe Martin, the policeman, who trained young boxers at a local gym, suggested Ali to first learn how to fight and began his boxing training.

Clay quickly took to the ring, making his competitive debut in 1954 in a three-minute amateur bout.

Here are some of the tweets remembering the greatest heavyweight boxer on his 78th birth anniversary:

“‘I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.’~Muhammad Ali. Happy Birthday Champion #MuhammadAli #birthday,” a user tweeted from his account.

Another user wrote: “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.. The hands can’t hit,what the eyes can’t see- Muhammad Ali. Happy 78th Birthday to The Greatest Boxer ever lived.”

–IANS

bu/bc

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