WBC orders rematch between Chocolatito and Rungvisai
The sanctioning bodies, while still the subject of the occasional punchline, also make decisions that usher in a kernel of justice, such as what the WBC did on Tuesday.
Roman (Chocolatito) Gonzalez will be allowed to face Sirisaket Sor Rungvisai in an immediate rematch after Gonzalez lost a controversial majority decision on March 18 for a 115-pount title, the WBC ruled after assessing a request by Gonzalez’s promoters, Teiken Promotions and K2 Promotions. The WBC also declared that former titleholders Carlos Cuadras and Juan Francisco Estrada, both of whom lost to Chocolatito in competitive scraps, are to face off for a vacant interim 115-pound title. The winners of both fights will then be ordered to fight each other, the WBC decided.
Regarding Chocolatito-Rungvisai, the WBC said it was ruling in the best interests of the sport in granting Chocolatito a rematch after many observers felt he should have been declared the winner and thus shouldn’t have lost his perch as the top boxer on most pound-for-pound lists. Gonzalez was also the victim of a pair of accidental head-butts in the bout, causing blood to trickle down his face for most of the duration of the match.
“The WBC Board of Governors considers that due to the extraordinary fight, which was extremely close and considering that the WBC championship rules regarding accidental head butts (the uncut boxer is penalized a point) were not used, but most importantly, considering a public demand to witness once again a great match between these (two) fighters, the WBC has granted the request by a unanimous vote to order the rematch between Sor Rungvisai and Gonzalez,” wrote WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman in a statement.
As for Cuadras and Estrada, while the WBC decided at its annual convention that the winners of Gonzalez-Rungvisai and Cuadras-David Carmona on March 18 would fight — given the compelling circumstances of Gonzalez’s match and that both fighters will be out for some time due to the taxing nature of the bout, the WBC decided to force a match between Cuadras and Estrada for an interim title. “The WBC is very pleased with this ruling that will provide a series of great fights in the division,” Sulaiman said, “which is very important for boxing and for the boxers.”