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When it comes to sports and entertainment, the glitz and the glamour of celebrity life, most of us only aspire to gain something small such as an autograph. Few of us ever have the chance to sit down with stars and discuss their lives, or rub shoulders with those closest to them. Being up close and personal with UFC, boxing and entertainment stars is just part of journalist Fiaz Rafiq's daily routine. He's worked closely with some of the most revered champions and pioneers of UFC. In this gripping memoir he shares riveting behind-the-scenes stories of the top MMA and boxing champions and legends, their gritty beginnings and their most triumphant moments. The result is the culmination of over two decades of work , gaining the trust and confidence of the greatest fighters and personalities in MMA and combat sports. To the Top is a fascinating odyssey, a compelling tale of triumph despite insurmountable odds. It uncovers the hidden history of the most brutal combat sport on the planet.
A riveting memoir by acclaimed combat sports and entertainment journalist Fiaz Rafiq, as he shares captivating stories of fighting legends and entertainment stars alongside the story of his own personal hardships, struggles against prejudice, and ultimate triumph. Fighting Against the Odds is the culmination of Fiaz Rafiq's decades of work behind the scenes as a mixed martial arts and combat sports journalist, gaining the trust and confidence of the best fighters in UFC and boxing. Rafiq shares candid accounts, hidden histories, and thrilling experiences from his time with some of the most famous and prominent personalities in fighting sports. Included are never-before-told stories of UFC's most decorated and revered champions in Randy Couture, Royce Gracie, Daniel Cormier, Brock Lesnar, Georges St-Peire, and Conor McGregor and boxing icons such as Mike Tyson and Muhammad Ali. Reaching the pinnacle of his career was anything but a smooth ride for Rafiq. The writer faced adversities, obstacles, and even harassment at American airports. Fighting Against the Odds is a fascinating odyssey, one man's inspiring coming-of-age story populated by some of the most colorful characters in the world of sports and entertainment. It is a powerful story of hard work, tenacity, and success against overwhelming odds.
Muhammad Ali is one of the most remarkable sports personalities and celebrities of our time. He is a legend who transcended boxing and rose above all sport. A man of mythic proportions, Ali rose to become a prominent feature of our cultural landscape. Through exclusive accounts from family members, close friends, associates and adversaries, Fiaz Rafiq has compiled a compelling and intriguing insight into a sporting legend. Muhammad Ali's story is an epic one, one of bravery, courage, hope, skill and indomitable will. Muhammad Ali: The Life of a Legend is an oral biography of the greatest icon of world sport who continues to influence millions. Among those interviewed include, George Foreman, Larry Holmes, Chuck Wepner, Joe Bugner, Angelo Dundee, Don King, Jim Brown, Lou Gossett Jr., Dr. Harry Edwards, Butch Lewis, Sugar Ray Leonard, Evander Holyfield, some close family members and some of the top sports journalists who worked with Ali, and many more.
Arnold Schwarzenegger - a bodybuilder-turned-real-estate mogul who turned an undefeated streak at the Mr Olympia contest into an astonishing film career and eight years as the governor of California - is, for many people, the embodiment of the American Dream. From humble beginnings in a small village in Austria, Schwarzenegger has come to symbolise the opportunities that exist for anyone willing to work hard - parlaying success and self-confidence into the influence to shape hearts and minds across the globe. Even today, whether he's campaigning against climate change or fist-bumping fellow strongmen at his self-titled athletic event, he's one of the few men on the planet who's recognisable from his first name alone. Arnold. Fiaz Rafiq uses in-depth interviews with Schwarzenegger's peers to tell the life story of the one-time Governator, featuring exclusive interviews with his personal and close friends, fellow bodybuilders and training partners, Hollywood co-stars, directors, executive producers, political personalities and journalists - all offering first-hand accounts of the man they know. Together, these voices show new dimensions to the Arnold we all think we know - from the driven young man who brought building into the mainstream to the passionate advocate for political change.
Labels such as 'icon' or 'legend' are rarely attached to one individual to the degree that they are to Bruce Lee. He only made a handful of films, yet four and a half decades after his untimely death at the age of 32, the Little Dragon's influence on culture is as strong as ever. Named among Time magazine's 100 most influential people of the 20th century, Lee wasn't just an actor and martial artist, but a director, inventor, husband, father and philosopher. His martial art, jeet kune do, is still practised around the world, while UFC champions credit him with inspiring the growing sport of mixed martial arts. His films kick-started a global kung fu boom and retain the power to awe today, while his thoughts - collected in a series of books from Lee's own notes - still inspire. Bruce Lee: The Life of a Legend is a unique oral biography that combines the memories of Lee's original students, close friends, co-stars and colleagues - those who knew him best - to provide a candid view on the action movie star adored by millions, capturing the essence of a complex man in a way no straightforward narrative ever could. Further, for the first time ever in print, legendary professional boxing, bodybuilding and MMA champions and personalities from the motion picture industry pay homage to Lee, giving a blend of unique perspectives on a man who changed the face of their respective sports.
"Rahaman has, at last, written the definitive biography on his late brother, which tells the real Ali story." -Mike Tyson More words have been written about Muhammad Ali than almost anyone else. He was, without doubt, the world's most-loved sportsman. At the height of his celebrity he was the most famous person in the world. And yet, until now, the one voice missing belonged to the man who knew him best-his only sibling, and best friend, Rahaman Ali. No one was closer to Ali than Rahaman. Born Cassius and Rudolph Arnett Clay, the two brothers grew up together, lived together, trained together, travelled together, and fought together in the street and in the ring. A near-constant fixture in his sibling's company, Rahaman saw Ali at both his best and his worst: the relentless prankster and the jealous older brother, the outspoken advocate, the husband and father. In My Brother, Muhammad Ali, Rahaman offers an insider's perspective on the well-known stories as well as never-before-told tales, painting a rich and intimate portrait of a proud, relentlessly polarizing, yet often vulnerable man. In this extraordinary, poignant memoir, Rahaman tells a much bigger and more personal story than in any other book on Muhammad Ali-that of two brothers, almost inseparable from birth to death. It is the final and most important perspective on an iconic figure.
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