| 8.6°C Dublin

Tributes paid to the late 'voice of boxing'

STARS of sport today paid tribute to Harry Carpenter, dubbed the Voice of Boxing, who has died aged 84.

His distinctive tones provided the backdrop to some of the most famous boxing fights in history, from Muhammad Ali and George Foreman's 'Rumble in the Jungle' to Frank Bruno's ill-fated title bout against Mike Tyson.

The former BBC commentator and sports presenter, whose career spanned almost half a century, passed away in his sleep at King's College Hospital, London.

His lawyer, David Wills, said he had been unwell since last summer when he had a minor heart attack. He added that a family funeral would be organised followed by a memorial service in London.

Carpenter is also remembered for his unlikely friendship with Frank Bruno, whose use of the catchphrase "Know what I mean, 'arry?" became legendary during their numerous post-fight interviews.

A spokesman for Bruno said the former heavyweight champion said was "very upset" by the news. He said: "Frank has many acquaintances but not many real friends. Harry Carpenter was a friend." Boxing promoter Frank Maloney said Carpenter was "probably one of the greatest commentators of all time".

Carpenter, who leaves behind a widow and one son, once speculated that his epitaph might read: "They stopped him talking at last."