Two Huddersfield men have shared their memories of boxing legend Muhammad Ali.

Joe Marsden was one of those lucky enough to watch Ali in action, travelling to Munich to see him fight English heavyweight Richard Dunn.

And Huddersfield artist Glen Folan, who captured the boxing giant on canvas, had the picture commissioned by football legen Pele just two days before Ali’s death.

Muhammad Ali was an “angel” and a “God-sent blessing to this Earth”, his brother Rahman said as it was revealed he died from septic shock caused by “unspecified natural causes”.

The three-time world heavyweight champion, who had battled Parkinson’s disease for 32 years, died in Phoenix, Arizona, on Friday evening local time after being admitted to hospital with a respiratory condition on Monday.

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His funeral will take place in his home town of Louisville, Kentucky, on Friday, where flags have been flying at half-mast since his death was announced.

Mr Marsden was with his brother Johnny in a group organised by the Yorkshire Executive Sporting Club, who travelled to Munich for the world heavyweight championship bout between Ali and Bradford boxer Richard Dunn.

Johnny Marsden (right), Joe Marsden (second right) and boxer Richard Dunn centre

The bout was in the Olympiahalle on May 24, 1976, and the fight was stopped in Ali’s favour in the fifth round.

Mr Marsden, who runs the Central Lodge Hotel in Huddersfield, said: “My brother Johnny and I were so glad and so privileged to be there on the night when a brave local lad, Richard Dunn took on the champ.

“An unforgettable night. An unforgettable man. Don`t mourn, Celebrate!!”

Artist Glen met Pele in London on Thursday, just hours before Alis death was announced.

The soccer great commissioned a painting of hinself with Ali.

Huddersfield artist Glenn Folan with soccer legend Pele and his painting of Pele with Muhammad Ali

Glen, 29, of Milnsbridge, has found a niche painting stars of stage, screen and sporting arenas.

Dad-of-one Glen is self-taught and took up art while serving a prison sentence.

On his release he set about rebuilding his life and has never looked back.

Glen said: “Art has changed my life and my past is in the past. “I have found something that I love and, fortunately, others love what I do too.”