Srisaket Sor Rungvisai favored, but many feel Juan Fransisco Estrada will prevail in the rematch
Heavy-handed WBC junior bantamweight champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (47-4-1, 41 KOs) fights former titleholder Juan Francisco Estrada (38-3, 26 KOs) for the second time tomorrow night at the Forum in Inglewood, CA.
Their first go around, held at the same venue last year, was a 12-round barnburner with Sor Rungvisai holding onto to his title by majority decision.
Sor Rungvisai, also known as Wisaksil Wangek, was virtually unknown a few years ago until he jumped at the opportunity to fight then pound-for-pound king, Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez.
His only edge, and a small one to boot, appeared to be in activity. Sor Rungvisai fought nine times in 2014, six times the following year, and five times in 2016. His last two fights before meeting Gonzalez were six-rounders. Modern day championship fighters don’t engage in six-rounders.
Gonzalez was a heavy favorite on fight night. Sor Rungvisai, the six-round fighter, was considered by many to be nothing more than a showcase bout for Gonzalez. Sor Rungvisai knocked Gonzalez down and won the fight via a controversial decision. Gonzalez demanded a rematch.
Most figured that Gonzalez would get his revenge, but instead it was obvious from the opening bell that Sor Rungvisai was the stronger fighter. He brutally knocked out Gonzalez in round four.
Since then, Sor Rungvisai has successfully defended his strap three times.
Estrada captured the WBA and WBO flyweight titles in 2013 by defeating Brian Viloria. The year before he had lost a competitive 12 round decision to Gonzalez. Estrada defended his title five times before moving up in weight. The Mexican fighter has looked very sharp in his most recent fights.
He says 100 percent ready for the rematch.
“I was fifty percent prepared last time,” said Estrada at a press conference a few weeks ago. “I didn’t want to train, but because I had some injuries that affected my preparation and we had no choice but to keep facing the fight as it was a very important fight. I had a knee injury first time around and my reactions were not the same. I was tired but I showed heart. The final round was one of the best rounds of the year. If I was one hundred percent prepared with no injuries - the whole fight would have been like that.”
Sor Rungvisai has prepareddiligently for the sequel.
“This is a very important fight,” Sor Rungvisai said. “I’m fully fit, more than 100 percent actually, and ready for this fight. I’m confident I can knock him [Estrada] out this time. I feel no pressure. I’m just going to concentrate on doing my best.”