The gloves worn by boxing legend Muhammad Ali when he won his first heavyweight championship are to be auctioned at Heritage Auctions New York.
Known as Cassius Clay at that time, the Ali faced Sonny Liston in 1964 and won through technical knockout. The gloves he used to do this now have an estimated value of £302,000.
The fight lasted seven rounds until Liston retired and Clay was deemed to be the winner. The day after the fight, Clay declared that his name would now be Cassius X but he was nicknamed Muhammad Ali the next week as he had converted to Islam. Angelo Dundee, Ali’s trainer, removed the gloves from the superstar’s hands, and they remained in Dundee’s possession until he died in February 2012.
A collector bought the gloves at that time but, as fight’s 50th anniversary approaches, he has opted to auction them. The director of sports collectibles for Heritage Auctions, Chris Ivy, said:
“It is hard to imagine a more important or evocative piece of boxing memorabilia. Ali is a figure that transcends boxing or America, he belongs to the entire world.”
The auction will be held following the 50th anniversary of the legendary fight. Whoever is lucky enough to purchase the gloves will pay a little more at auction than the final bid, as a buyer’s premium will be added by the auction house. If the successful bidder wants to keep the gloves secure, he may want to consider an antique chest. Blackburn has various reputable dealers with a selection to view without any added charges.
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