Boxing

Muhammad Ali's gloves fetch $400,000

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Muhammad Ali memorabilia remains the most sort after by sports collectors after a pair of gloves he wore during his 1971 clash against Joe Frazier at Madison Square Garden in New York fetched $388,375 at Auction on Thursday.

Sonny Liston

An anonymous bidder bought the gloves worn by Ali in their first bout that has become famously known as: "The Fight of the Century," from an auction run by, Texas-based Heritage Auctions at the national sports collectors convention in Cleveland.

The sale comes off the back of another pair of gloves auctioned off by the same company in February that fetched a staggering $836,500.

Sonny Liston v Mohammed Ali

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The gloves sold back then were a pair worn by the boxing legend when he stunned the then world champion Sonny Liston in Miami, winning the fight on a technical knock-out when Liston failed to come out for the seventh round citing an injured shoulder.

Although it is claimed Liston was seen throwing a chair across the dressing-room after the bout with the same shoulder, leading to a number of other theories as to why he quit.

On that famous day in boxing history, Ali was crowned, The Ring, WBC and WBA Heavyweight Champion for the first time in what was regarded as the biggest upset in boxing history. 

The return bout a year later ended in the first round when Ali floored the former champion with a punch that was so quick, those in attendance didn't see what happened.

Joe Frazier v Mohammed Ali

Joe Frazier

The latest pair of gloves that went under the hammer, underlines the remarkable investment opportunity that remains associated with anything that is, or has been associated with: The Greatest."

That famous night on the 8th of March 1971 was the first of three-bouts between the pair and the most anticipated sporting event of the year. Not even stars like Frank Sinatra were able to secure a ringside seat such was the demand.

Both fighters were undefeated and with Ali only fighting for a third time since his three-year absence, many expected the younger Frazier to come away with victory.

That he did, although he had to go a full 15-rounds to get the decision, in what to this day is regarded as one of the most brutal confrontations ever seen in the ring.

The par went toe to toe, on two more occasions, at Madison Gardens in 1974 when the decision went in favour of Ali over 12 rounds and then a year later in the famous: "Thrilla in Manilla," when Frazier's team were forced to stop the bout in the 14th-round.

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