Muhammad Ali vs. Brian London

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Muhammad Ali vs. Brian London was a professional boxing matching between Muhammad Ali and Brian London. The match took place at Earls Court Arena, London, England on August 6, 1966. It was scheduled for fifteen rounds. The match ended in the third round with Ali defeating London by KO.[1][2][3][4][5]

Muhammad Ali vs. Brian London
DateAugust 6, 1966
VenueEarls Court Arena, London, England
Tale of the tape
Boxer United Kingdom Brian London United States Muhammad Ali
Hometown Blackpool, Lancashire, United Kingdom Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Pre-fight record 35-13 24-0
Height 6′ 0″ 6' 3"
Weight 201½ lbs 209½ lbs
Style Orthodox Orthodox
Ali defeats London in 3rd round by KO

The fight[edit]

Ali at 24 years old put on a masterful performance against a clearly out-classed 32 year old opponent, with Ali having the advantages of height, weight, reach and youth on his side, almost hitting London at will as the fight went on. As London put it in an interview with the BBC: "he was just getting through all the time".

Ali bouncingly circled continually, whilst London tracked doggedly after him for the first two rounds seemingly with a strategy of trying to land a single knock-out punch to the American champion. London succeeded in landing only one blow in the match, a left jab to Ali's jaw midway through the 1st Round which caught Ali by surprise and left him for a moment stunned (and wide-open for a follow through right cross, which London failed to take advantage of), but the blow lacked weight and Ali was able to quickly recover.

On coming out for the 3rd Round London displayed a patent degree of hesitation to come forward to engage, and Ali sensing this advanced to the attack flashly, penning him back into a corner and throwing a 12-punch combination in 3 seconds in a showboating display of speed and athleticism, but with a suspicion of Ali holding back, with few of the blows actually connecting or possessing weight behind them, and the one blow that did (the 10th) being just enough to knock London down and end the fight.[6]

In a post-career media interview London described his contest with Ali in stark terms, describing Ali as being:-

"Big, fast and he could punch, whereas I was smaller, fatter and couldn't punch. He stopped me in three rounds and that was it, I don't think I hit him. It was good money and I got well paid for it - that's all I fought for. Every fight I ever had I always had a go, but with Muhammad Ali I thought don't get hurt Brian, and I therefore didn't try, which was wrong, totally wrong."[7]


  1. ^ "If Cassius Can't Punch, Then London Isn't Down". Sports Illustrated. 15 August 1966. Retrieved 7 October 2016.
  2. ^ Stephen Brunt (2002). Facing Ali. The Lyons Press. pp. 75–9.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Brit boxer battered by Muhammad Ali says it was an 'honour' to have fought him". Mirror. 5 June 2016. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
  4. ^ "On This Day: Muhammad Ali annihilated Brian London". Boxing News. 6 August 2016. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
  5. ^ "Muhammad Ali's ring record". ESPN. 19 November 2003. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
  6. ^ 'Muhammad Ali vs Brian London full fight', published on Youtube 18 January 2009.
  7. ^ Interview with Brian London, 'When Ali Came to Britain' (2012), television documentary made by ITV Sport.