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Monday, 14 January, 2002, 08:45 GMT
Birthday messages for Muhammad Ali
Boxing legend Muhammad Ali turns 60 on Thursday. Send your birthday greetings to 'The Greatest'.


Born Cassius Clay on 17 January 1942, Muhammad Ali is undoubtedly the most famous boxer ever to grace the ring.

He won Olympic gold in 1960, before going on to win the world heavyweight title on three occasions.

At his peak, Ali was the most recognisable face on the planet, and despite a debilitating illness, remains an iconic figure to this day.

Send your birthday tributes to sport's greatest ever star.


Muhammad Ali still embodies the best of the human spirit. Self-belief, dignity, humour, intelligence and self-pride. What a man!
Ovais Naqvi, UK

It's unbelievable that a person I only know from the TV screens, has somehow provided me with inspirations in every aspect of my life. You are truly a great man.
Munaf Ibrahim, Bolton, England

There have been greats and legends who have achieved fame for what they did on field. But, surely nobody can match it with the resolve and self-belief that you showed off it too apart from all the skill in the ring. You are truly the greatest.
Vivek Sharma, India

The most influential and inspirational sportman ever on this earth. His self pride and self-respect inspired many in different parts of the world to stand by their principles and defend their basic rights. God bless you Ali, to stay alive, and happy for many years to come.
Samuel Shivute, Namibia

Thank you for showing the world what courage means
Nancy Price, USA
Happy 60th to the greatest boxer who ever lived. You will always be the champ!
Paul Regan, Newcastle, Australia

I was a teenager when Muhammad was at his prime. I can only imagine how good his boxing would have been if the US Government hadn't robbed him of his best years. To think what he achieved (boxing wise) after his lay-off when he beat Foreman, Frazier and almost everyone else, defies belief. He wasn't a saint, but he was a giant of both his own and future generations. Happy birthday champ and may you have many more of them.
Jim Finnie, US

You've had my admiration for at least 30 years. Thank you for showing the world what courage means.
Nancy Price, USA

Happy Birthday, to a very special person. You have so much dignity, intelligence and heart. A role model for millions across the globe.
Ellie Martin, Portugal

Mohammed Ali is the greatest sports man, philosopher and poet. He is a man who challenged and defeated not only his boxing opponent but also ideas that he does not believe in. He really is a true role model for all us out here. Happy 60 years Champ!
Seifu Gebremeskel, Brussels, Belgium

You have served as a role model about standing up for what is right
Peter MacIver, Australia
The personification of greatness and an inspiration to all mankind. Thank you for the courage you have shown and the love you have inspired.
Tom Rowland-Hill, London, England

I can remember that day in Zaire when you knocked down Foreman. For me that day was your real birth day, I could not sleep that day because you were born. A flame of glory was lit and will remain for ever and eternally as yourself.
Bernardo McKenzie, Angola

I will never forget your fight with Joe Fraizer in which you gave him the worst and the most strong punches. I was then in the USA, out shopping watching you on television in a TV store. I waited until the end of the game and I was shouting "long live Ali!" I still pray for your long life and wishing you the best in your prosperous years to come. May God bless you dear Ali.
Abdul Fatah Roshangar, Afghanistan

One of my earliest memories is seeing you box live on the television. For me (and I guess millions of others) you have served as a role model about standing up for what is right and perhaps most importantly, your actions taught me the importance of racial tolerance. You are one of the few people who have changed the world for the better. Good on ya Champ.
Peter MacIver, Australia

All our lives have been graced by you being among us
Ian Gregory, England
Top man. Top boxer. Definitely the greatest. Warm greetings and heartfelt congratulations on your 60th birthday for a lifelong contribution to sport and humanity.
Sean Middleton, UK

You are my best friend. Happy birthday to you. I wish you all the best - you are always champion. Can you tell me please about food wich food danger for fatttt.
Adib, Dover

Mohamed Ali, you are the best and you are the master of boxing. Happy birthday to you. Our prayers are with you.
Sayeed, Preston, England

To have so touched the lives of so many way beyond the world of boxing is tribute enough to your extraordinary athleticism, wonderful courage and compelling personality. All our lives have been graced by you being among us. Thank you.
Ian Gregory, England

Words cannot describe your virtues
Zulfikar Khan, England
Let us blare the horns and celebrate, for Muhammad Ali has shown us all what greatness really means. He promoted his sport with all his faculties and had brawn to match. He stood up for his beliefs, and rightly so, pointing quite early to the futility of war. He has also demonstrated to us all that medical adversity should not force one into despondence. May Allah continue to bless you and may your shadow never grow less. Enjoy your birthday.
Efosa Aruede, Nigeria

I read about you in school. I read your younger days and your fighting with the racists. Anyway I hope my life will be just as much worthful as yours.
Kirankhadka, Nepal

What a fighter, but more importantly, what a man. He certainly opened my eyes.
David Young, UK

Happy Birthday to a man who has floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee, and now - like always - makes people happy!
Geoff, England

I've been reading all the comments and it has brought tears to my eyes. Words cannot describe your virtues, Happy Birthday Muhammed Ali!
Zulfikar Khan, England

Surely this man is a gift from above
Simon Mundie, UK
As a black kid growing up in London you made me proud to be what I am, I have a lot to thank you for. Truly the greatest.
Jimmy Lewis, England

Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee! My name is Muhammad - Muhammad Ali! What a man, what an athlete. To be a great man as well as a great athlete is a rare phenomenon. Quite simply, undisputedly, unquestionably, you were and always will be the greatest of all time. Happy Birthday Champ - you're a living legend!
John Davis, United Kingdom

Muhammad Ali: the best fighter, a much loved father, an inspired poet, the leader of a generation, one of the biggest figures of the 20th century, a showman, the biggest challenge to the racist status quo of America at that time. Surely this man is a gift from above: thank you Allah!
Simon Mundie, UK

MA you are the best, you are the greatest, you flew like a butterfly and stung like a bee no doubt, you are simply 'Lord of the Ring', a great champ and a wonderful human being. An example for us all, thank you for giving us so much pleasure, have a wonderful 60th and many more.
Zack, Sweden

More than boxer and a sportsman, he was a man who saw the future and changed thinking
Rienzie, Malaysia

Congratulations Mr Muhammad Ali. I pray for your long life and happiness. I hope your daughter Laila follows in your footsteps. Happy birthday.
Amie Manneh, Gambia

Salaam Brother, I was born in the year you beat George Foreman and started following your biography a few years back. I really admire you as a role model and pray to Allah that he blesses you and helps you in all the good causes you are involved in.
Imran Ali, England

The innovator who was more than boxer and a sportsman, he was a man who saw the future, changed thinking, the culture and role of sports in our lives. I love the man and what he stood for.
Rienzie, Malaysia

A brilliant role model. May Allah bless him with good health and a long life!
Yasir, Glasgow, Scotland

Muhammad Ali - A hero to several generations who transcended sport and truly is the 'greatest'. Happy Birthday!
Paul Nelson, Thailand

Still the greatest and always will be
Imran Patel, UK

To a champion of not only boxing but of life, Ali retired when I was seven but he was and still is my hero. A true champion in all senses of the word. Here's to another 60!
Dave King, UK

A truly worthy role model in a world with a dearth of role models. A man whose influence and compassion reaches beyond sport.
Greg Lewis, Australia

Happy birthday Ali. You talked the talk and you could always walk the walk. A great boxer, sportsman and more importantly a great ambassador for mankind. Happy birthday and may you have many more!
Stewart, Scotland

The greatest sportsman ever born. Still the greatest and always will be. Happy Birthday Sir Ali.
Imran Patel, UK

In today's world, we brandish the word legend around to frequently in the absence of true icons and role models. Ali, you own the copyright and trademark on that one. Happy Birthday Champ.
Declan Byrne, Ireland

The greatness of Ali was not limited to the boxing ring. He was, and is, one of the greatest people that ever lived. No sportsperson has ever been able to match, or even come close to the way Ali used his stature to challenge imperialism, racism and any other form of oppression.
Kamal Munir, Cambridge, UK

What a man, what a star, the greatest boxer of all time
John Price, Wigan, UK

I was in Malaysia at the time Ali fought Joe Bugner and will never forget the absolute frenzy he caused amongst the locals there. He is the greatest there ever was, and it can also be said that he was the only sportsman who was bigger than the game. When he left boxing the game suffered unbelievably.
Roshan Fernando, Negombo, Sri Lanka

What a man, what a star, the greatest boxer of all time. I don't like the sport but have the greatest respect for all you have achieved both in and out of the ring. You are a true sportsman, an example to the over hyped sportsmen of today. Happy Birthday.
John Price, Wigan, UK

He stood up to the US authorities to defend his principles and refused to fight in Vietnam. He helped Black Americans to gain recognition and respect. He delighted the whole world with his sense of fun. He was the best sportsman of all time. Today's boxers wouldn't have got near him with a shovel. Quite simply, he was the Greatest of all time! God Bless you Muhammad and Happy Birthday.
Joe Ahmed, United Kingdom

A great champion, a great human being - that's what makes him the best. Happy Birthday.
Shathif Ali, Maldives

Simply the Greatest sportsman of the last century - still an inspiration to us all. A very happy birthday to you.
Javed Kureishi, Pakistan

It's unimaginable to believe 'The Greatest' is sixty years old
Sean O'Reilly, Ireland

Build, speed and agility - you had them all. With this combination many would fall! Have a great day. Happy Birthday.
John Bartropp, England

Happy Birthday to the greatest - I love the man so much. You still give so much to the world, if only there were more like you.
David Barry, England

It's unimaginable to believe 'The Greatest' is sixty years old. Come to think of it, every boxer he fought reached that age while they were in the ring with him. Happy Birthday Champ.
Sean O'Reilly, Ireland

Muhammad Ali, thank you for the example you set for all of us. You are one of God's bright stars. A great boxer and more importantly a really great human being - Happy Birthday.
Daniel Osei-Kissi, United kingdom

I have followed his life since I was a kid. I was too young to see him fight but in an age lacking role models and figureheads, Ali is someone that all kids should look to. He shook up the world when he beat Liston, and five decades on, very few in the world have had an impact as great as he has. God bless him. Happy birthday!
Faisal Adeel, UK

you proved to be a master of the game during your time and may you live to blow 1001 candles.
Joel Maina, Kenya

If ever a fighter had been able to demonstrate that they were the greatest, it was Ali. He truly was the greatest of them all, happy birthday.
Darren Davies, Wales

The highest praise for Ali still wouldn't be high enough! Happy Birthday, and all the best.
Robbie Taylor, London, England

Happy birthday Ali. We know you are ailing as a result of the crude game which should now be banned. However, you proved to be a master of the game during your time and may you live to blow 1001 candles.
Joel Maina, Kenya

Muhammad Ali is the greatest boxer in the world. I have nothing but respect for the great one. May Allah bless you on this special occasion. Happy Birthday.
Hamraz Ellahi, England, UK

Happy Birthday Ali - Always the Greatest!!
Anthony Critchley, England

Muhammad Ali, You are the greatest of ALL the greatest boxers in history. Happy Birthday!
Gilly Mkindi, Tanzania

BBC Sport Online reviews the life and career of Muhammad Ali at 60

Ali's birthday landmark

Special features

The great fights




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