Muhammad Ali's daughter denies rumours boxing legend is close to death


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The Independent Online

Muhammad Ali's family have denied reports that his health is deteriorating after comments from his brother which claimed he was 'close to death.'

Rahman Ali told The Sun on Sunday: "He's in a bad way. He's very sick," continuing, "It could be months, it could be days. I don't know if he'll last the summer. He's in God's hands."

Rahman did, however, admit he had not seen his brother since July, and claimed that the former boxer's wife was refusing him access, and that the pair only communicated via telephone.

In response to the article Muhammad Ali's daughter dismissed rumours of the heavyweight boxing legend dubbed The Greatest being near death today, saying he was at home watching the Super Bowl.

May May Ali said she talked to her father on the phone yesterday morning and he was fine. She said he was watching the Super Bowl at home in Arizona, wearing a Baltimore Ravens jersey.

"He's fine, in fact he was talking well this morning," she said. "These rumours pop up every once in a while but there's nothing to them."

The rumours were started by a British tabloid newspaper report quoting Ali's brother, Rahman, as saying the 71-year-old former champion, who suffers from Parkinson's disease, was near death. Rahman, though, said he had not seen his brother since last summer and had no contact with the family.

The report was widely repeated on the internet, drawing expressions of condolences on Twitter and Facebook.