Alan Minter leaves behind legacy of crowd thriller who never shirked a challenge
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Alan Minter wasn't just a boxing hero, he was a sporting star.
The former undisputed middleweight has died at the age of 69 after a long battle with cancer.
He leaves behind a legacy of a fighter who thrilled crowds and also never shirked a challenge.
Minter won almost everything in the sport after he claimed bronze at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich.
Even then he was wronged in the semi-final against his German foe.
But he went on to win the British, Commonwealth and European titles as a professional.
The Crawley southpaw then reached the pinnacle of his career when he went to Las Vegas to beat Italian Vito Antuofermo and became middleweight champion of the world in 1980.
The scorecards were hotly disputed but the performance still stands today as one of the finest by a Brit abroad.
But when Minter got Antuofermo back to the UK for the rematch the judges weren't needed as he stopped him in the eighth and became a star on these shores.
His next defence would be against none other than Marvin Hagler in the same year.
Three huge fights in the space of six months only added to Minter's legacy.
But it was an ugly night when he lost the titles to the American at Wembley Arena as the home fans reacted angrily to the early stoppage of their hero.
Hagler was a relative unknown back then so those in attendance thought nothing about throwing beer cans and chairs as a fighter that would go on to be in the hall of fame amid shameful scenes.
Minter retired at 29 with a record of 39 wins and nine defeats while he will be remembered fondly forever in British boxing and sporting history.
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