The whole world was thrown into mourning as a boxing legend Muhammad Ali, a former heavyweight champion, died.
He died at age of 74 , a family spokesman has said.
Ali , one of the world’ s best-known sportsmen, died at a hospital in the US city of Phoenix , Arizona , after being admitted on Thursday .
He was suffering from a respiratory illness , a condition that was complicated by Parkinson’ s disease.
The funeral will take place in Ali ’s hometown of Louisville , Kentucky, his family said in a statement.
Born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Ali shot to fame by winning light-heavyweight gold at the 1960 Rome Olympics .
Nicknamed “The Greatest”, the American beat Sonny Liston in 1964 to win his first world title and became the first boxer to capture a world heavyweight title on three separate occasions . He eventually retired in 1981, having won 56 of his 61 fights .
But he was also a civil rights campaigner and poet who transcended the bounds of sport , race and nationality .
Asked how he would like to be remembered, he once said :
“As a man who never sold out his people . But if that ’s too much , then just a good boxer . I won ’t even mind if you don ’t mention how pretty I was .”
Ali turned professional immediately after the Rome Olympics and rose through the heavyweight ranks, delighting crowds with his showboating , shuffling feet and lightning reflexes.
Ali, whose fame transcended sport during a remarkable heavyweight boxing career that spanned three decades, had been hospitalized in the Phoenix, Arizona, area with a respiratory ailment this week, “After a 32-year battle with Parkinson’s disease.