Sobers leads Lord’s tribute to Muhammad Ali

gary-sobers-1006Garfield Sobers, arguably cricket’s greatest all-rounder, led a special tribute to Muhammad Ali at Lord’s on Friday that coincided with the boxing legend’s funeral.

The two sporting icons met at Lord’s way back in 1966 when Sobers was a member of the West Indies side playing England in a Test and heavyweight star Ali was in London for his second fight with Britain’s Henry Cooper.

During the lunch interval of Friday’s second day’s play in the third Test between England and Sri Lanka, black and white photographs of Ali meeting Sobers in the Lord’s dressing room were displayed on the ground’s giant screens.

Sobers, 79, then rang a bell in the Lord’s pavilion five minutes before the start of the second session of play as a tribute.

Ali and Sobers enjoyed success here in 1966. Ali stopped a bloodied Cooper in the sixth round to retain his world heavyweight title.

Sobers (163 not out) and his cousin David Holford (105) shared a second-innings stand of 274 that helped save the West Indies from defeat as it drew the second Test. (Courtesy AFP)