WASHINGTON, December 23. /TASS/. World’s legendary boxer is quickly recovering after he was diagnosed with pneumonia and hospitalized in Kentucky over the weekend, TMZ entertainment news website reported on Tuesday.
The website quoted Rasheda Ali-Walsh, a daughter of the boxing icon, as saying that her 72-year-old father was “doing so much better” and she was not surprised that he had been recovering so quickly.
"My daddy is a strong man,” she was quoted as saying. “He's so resilient and we're all very grateful and blessed."
She also said that since her father was taken to a hospital on Saturday numerous people expressed the words of sympathy to the family.
"When I see my dad, I'm gonna tell him about all the people who have sent their love," Rasheda was quoted as saying. "I know it's gonna make him feel great to know all these people are thinking about him. He'll love it."
Born as Cassius Clay on January 17, 1942, the iconic US boxer won his first heavyweight world championship title at the age of 22 after defeating Sonny Lisbon. Following that fight Ali changed his name as he joined the Nation of Islam and in 1975 he converted to Sunni Islam.
In all, the legendary boxer fought a total of 61 bouts, winning 56 of them (37 by KOs) and losing five. In 1999 he was named by the famous US magazine Sports Illustrated as the "Sportsman of the Century," while BBC crowned him as the "Sports Personality of the Century."