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Page last updated at 21:01 GMT, Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Lewis handed Hall of Fame honour

Lennox Lewis
Lewis is a three-time world heavyweight title-holder

Britain's former world heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis will headline the 2009 inductees into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

Lewis, 43, retired in 2003 with a record of 41 wins (32 by KO), two defeats and a draw, and enters the Hall in his first year of eligibility.

He said: "To be put in the Hall of Fame is an accomplishment that seals my legacy. It will always be there."

Lewis recently denied speculation that he is planning to make a comeback.

Hall of Fame trainer Emmanuel Steward, a 1996 inductee, said: "Lennox definitely belongs in the top six heavyweights of all-time.

"He would have been a threat to any heavyweight champion in history because of his size, balance and all-around skill. Lennox could do whatever he had to do to win a fight."

Joining Lewis in the Hall of Fame will be American bantamweight champion Orlando Canizales and South African super-featherweight champion Brian Mitchell.

606: DEBATE
RJDT

Posthumous honourees are middleweight William Jones, welterweight Billy Smith and middleweight Billy Soose in the Old-Timer category.

Inductees are voted in by members of the Boxing Writers' Association and a panel of international boxing historians.

The 20th Annual Hall of Fame Weekend is scheduled for 11-14 June in Canastota, New York.

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