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About once every 50 years, a sportsman emerges whose popularity transcends his chosen field of expertise.

The last one to do so was Muhammad Ali who announced his arrival with a gold medal at the Olympics in 1960, and went on to become the most popular athlete in the world.

The latest is Jamaican sprinter, Usain Bolt, and the similarities between the two men are obvious.

Their appeal extends far beyond ability. It involves a special alchemy of charisma, flair, humour, generosity of spirit and good grace.

Usain Bolt will remain in the public consciousness long after his achievements have been consigned to the record books.

And that’s what transforms a star into a sporting legend.