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Muhammad Ali.

             Teachers and fellow students from my opening statement a lot of you probably already know whom my speech is about. No the answer is not me but close its Muhammad Ali. .
             He was born in Louisville, U.S.A on January 18th, 1942 and was christened as Cassius Clay. Clay was introduced to the boxing ring when he was 12 years old by a Louisville police officer that saw his potential after he whipped an older boy who had stolen his bicycle. He took to boxing like a duck to water and later commenced an amateur career in boxing.
             Soon after graduating from high school, Clay won the light heavyweight gold medal at the 1960 Olympics in Rome. He then decided to turn professional.
             In 1964 after only 20 professional fights he upset Sonny Liston and became world heavyweight champion. Claiming "I"m not only the greatest, I"m the double greatest. Not only do I knock em out, I pick the round.".
             After joining the Nation of Islam in the same year, their leader gave him the Muslim name "Muhammad Ali". Muhammad meant "One of worthy praise" and Ali was the name of a cousin of the prophets.
             Up until his retirement in 1980 his amazing professional record stood at 56 wins, 5 loss and 37 knockouts. Throughout his career, Ali earned a reputation as an aggressive fighter with a colourful personality. His skills supported his claim that he could "Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee." .
             Outside the ring, Ali loved the media limelight, challenging and stirring prospective opponents through interviews and pre-arranged confrontations. He became one of the most recognizable sports figures in the world and retired as one of boxing greatest champions.
             Not only do I admire him for his great achievements in boxing but also for his courage to stand up for what he believed in. His association with the Nation of Islam and his insistence of being called Muhammad Ali instead of his slave name Cassius Clay.

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