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16 NOVEMBER 2018

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Srisaket KOs Gonzalez/ Estrada Outlasts Cuadras

Srisaket Sor Rungvisai leaves no doubt.
Srisaket Sor Rungvisai leaves no doubt.

By Derek Bonnett

Many boxing fans came to the Stub Hub Arena in Carson, California hoping to see redemption or justification for Roman Gonzalez following his controversial loss at Madison Square Garden back in March. Instead, boxing fans were treated to an emphatic display of punching power from Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in his effort to retain his WBC 115 super flyweight title.


Roman Gonzalez’ struggles began greatly as he ascended in his fourth weight division, climbing from 105, to 108, to 112 until reaching 115. Great fighters take great strides and Gonzalez’ rise against heavier fighters also coincided with his rise to take on more talented fighters and the combination proved overwhelming this time around. Round one of the main event saw the defending champion Rungvisai landing heavier shots and throwing with greater frequency. Gonzalez was a tad shy in the early going and gave the round up while trying to circle away from the Thai puncher. Rounds two and three were close, but the champion remained stronger and, noticeably, more confident. Gonzalez’ combination punches were missing from the round and no work to the body prevailed on his end in round two. Round three saw Gonzalez finding some precision in his punches, but the challenger still ate enough for the champion to win the round. The end came at 1:18 of round four after the champion twice dropped Gonzalez with right hooks. The second left Gonzalez on the canvas similarly to Manny Pacquiao’s early KO of Ricky Hatton.

"I fought for Thailand," Rungvisai told Max Kellerman after the bout.


Srisaket Sor Rungvisai climbed to 44-4-1 (40) and made the first defense of his second world championship. Gonzalez, visibly devastated by the defeat, fell to 46-2-0 (38).


In the opening bout of the HBO triple header, Juan Francisco Estrada overcome an early rounds deficit to defeat Carlos Cuadras for the right to meet Rungvisai for his 115-pound title. The former flyweight champion started slow and was both outboxed and outpunched over the first four frames. However, Estrada began to find his way in the fifth and noticeably wobbled Cuadras in the sixth and seventh. As he tired Cuadras fought more flat-footedly and this opened him up to more of the offensive attack of his fellow Mexican. Cuadras was not done and he fought well in the eighth and ninth before getting dropped in the tenth. From that round on Estrada appeared to do more in terms of clean connects and his power punches looked to be the more effective. Initially, "Carlos Estrada" was announced the winner of the contest by three margins of 114-113. Cuadras’ team began to celebrate wildly before the correction was made recognizing Juan Francisco Estrada as the correct winner by those scores.


Estrada elevated his record to 36-2-0 (25) and will try to become a two-division champion. Cuadras fell to 36-2-1 (27).


Also on the card, Naoya Inoue won a lopsided contest over Antonio Nieves in a WBO super flyweight bout. Nieves barely threatened to win a round and was battered in most sessions. After round six, his corner had seen enough and spared him further punishment from the Japanese champion who demonstrated a ram-rod jab and thudding body work, which produced a knockdown in round five.


Inoue registered the sixth defense of his title and lifted his ledger to 14-0-0 (12). Nieves sank to 17-2-2 (9).


Former two-division champion Brian Viloria also scored a stoppage in Carson, putting away Miguel Cartagena in five rounds to raise his numbers to 38-5-0 (23).

Estrada earns shot at Rungvisai
Estrada earns shot at Rungvisai

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