Former WBC world champion Román "Chocolatito" González was greeted by a huge, loyal and forever appreciative crowd, at the international airport of Managua, following his stunning defeat against Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, who's the super flyweight supremo.
Gonzalez was knocked out in four rounds at the StubHub Center in Carson, California by Sor Rungvisai. It was not possible for Roman to recover the crown that lost in March in New York, but an Icon's greeting awaited him.
Deputy Mayor of Managua, Enrique Armas, the director of Channel 13, Mauricio Ortega, son of President Daniel Ortega, carried a message of support for "Chocolatito", who'd previously notched 46 victories without defeats, winning four won crowns in 4 divisions, namely minimum, light fly, fly and super fly,
"We want to tell Román that he is still our champion," emotionally stressed Deputy Mayor Armas, in a wonderful, memorable and bitter sweet moment.
"Chocolatito" grateful for the reception, highlighting his affection for the Nicaraguan people.
"I have always given my people many victories, but Saturday I could not find the victory," said Gonzalez. "That's the way it is, that's the boxing world and I have no excuses. I was in the best shape but the most important factor is that I'm in good health."
Srisaket Sor Rungvisai knocked out Roman Gonzalez in the fourth round last Saturday with a devastating right hook to retain his WBC super flyweight world title in his second straight win over the former champ.
Thailand’s Srisaket knocked ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez down twice in the final round, finishing the challenger off with a right hook with 1:45 to go in the fourth.
Gonzalez, of Nicaragua, stayed on the canvas for a couple of minutes. After rising slowly he had to be helped to his corner stool.
The first knockdown came 42 seconds earlier when southpaw Srisaket landed a similar short right hook to the side of the head. Gonzalez was able to get up at the count of seven and continue — but looked out of sorts.
The 30-year-old Srisaket went to work quickly in the first round, easily landing combinations and body shots — the fruits of months of intense training in the gym for the most important fight of his career.
The Thai dynamo silenced critics who had claimed his majority decision win in the first fight six months ago in New York was a fluke and the result of accidental head butts.
Both fighters came out swinging from the opening bell in Saturday’s 115-pound rematch at the outdoor StubHub Center stadium, as it became apparent in the early rounds that Srisaket was in charge and the fight likely would not go the distance.
Srisaket (44-4-1, 40 KOs) said he wanted to make his country proud.
Gonzalez, who dropped to 46-2 overall, was taken to the hospital immediately after the fight for medical treatment.