I hated every minute of training but I said, “Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”
A quote said by a very influential boxer by the name of Muhammad Ali. Muhammad Ali, an American man who was a world renowned Boxer, being World Heavyweight Champion 10 times, along with a gold medal at the Rome Olympics in 1960.
Muhammad Ali, originally know as Cassius Clay jnr. was born in Kentucky, USA on the 17th of January 1942. With self-motivation and self-belief Muhammad Ali made a name for himself, putting him in the position he is today. With a total of 61 fights, in his professional career, he had 56 wins, 37 of them by KO and only 5 losses; he is a true sporting champion. He wasn’t only a boxer but a poet too. Ali influenced people by the poetry he said, along with the belief he had in himself.
Muhammad Ali was directed to boxing by a local Louisville police officer and boxing coach after they encountered him fuming over the theft of his bicycle at the age of 12. In Ali’s amateur boxing career he won many titles such as: six Kentucky Golden Gloves, two national Golden Gloves, Amateur Athletic Union National Title and the Light Heavyweight gold medal in the 1960 Summer Olympics. Muhammad Ali also had an astonishing 100 wins to 5 losses in his amateur career.
One of Muhammad Ali’s influential times in his boxing career was when he threw his Olympic gold medal in the Ohio River. Ali did this because he was refused service at a ‘whites-only’ restaurant, even after he represented the country in the Olympics and won gold. This influenced people of all nationalities in the way he made a stand on something that was important to him and people look up to him because of that. Ali didn’t want to feel like a slave to white people and by him throwing his medal in the Ohio River was a symbol of what he believes in.
Power over people wasn’t an intention of Muhammad Ali but it was him getting power over himself and then giving advice. By Ali telling himself and the world he was the best was only to convince himself. It may be taken at arrogance but really it was for self-good. People followed him because of that, especially sports enthusiasts. On top of this Muhammad Ali used his poetry skills in a way to help people to achieve their goals not only in sport but also with life.
Some say Muhammad Ali was corrupt and plain stupid, but with his power Ali proved to himself and the world that he is the greatest boxer of all time and to show this, he was crowned in 1999 by Sports Illustrated the ‘Sportsman of the Century’. Ali has influenced people in many different ways all for the good, with his motivation coming from the determination and desperation to succeed from within. Muhammad Ali is a good influential, sporting legend with all good intentions.
- by Matty Gunn, 10ENG