Sor Rungvisai set to return from 1-year layoff

Boxing

Former two-time junior bantamweight world titlist Srisaket Sor Rungvisai will return from a one-year layoff on April 4 in his first fight since losing his belt.

Sor Rungvisai, a Thailand national hero, will take on former flyweight titlist and countryman Amnat Ruenroeng at Workpoint Studios in Bangkok, Thailand, WP Boxing has announced. A win likely would set up Sor Rungvisai for a third fight with world champion Juan Francisco Estrada, the man who took the belt from his last year, later this year in the United States.

Sor Rungvisai (47-5-1, 41 KOs), 33, lost a close decision and his 115-pound world title in an action-packed rematch against Mexico’s Estrada (40-3, 27 KOs) last April at The Forum in Inglewood, California. Sor Rungvisai had previously outpointed Estrada to retain his title in 2018, also at The Forum. Sor Rungvisai and Estrada are both promoted by Matchroom Boxing, which has its eye on making a rubber match.

“For this warm-up fight with Amnat I want to show my physical ability to Estrada that I still have the thirst for a third fight with him because I want to bring my championship belt back to my home country,” Sor Rungvisai said in translated remarks. “I am counting the days to part 3, but before I get there I have this fight which I know it is not easy because (Ruenroeng) is a great fighter and a former world champion and I can’t underestimate him. Guarantee that it will be a fun fight for sure.”

Sor Rungvisai cracked the top 10 pound-for-pound rankings in 2017 thanks to back-to-back victories over four-division world champion Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, first winning a controversial decision to take his title in a bloody contender for fight of the year that knocked Gonzalez from his perch as the No. 1 fighter in the world pound for pound. They met in an immediate rematch and Sor Rungvisai left no doubt in a crushing fourth-round knockout victory.

Ruenroeng (20-3, 6 KOs), 40, won a flyweight world title in 2014 and made five successful defenses until losing the belt in 2016. He has won two fights in a row and was also one of the professionals who competed in the 2016 Olympics.

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