Britain’s WBA super-flyweight champion will test his skills against Nicaraguan Gonzalez, one of the sport’s most accomplished fighters, on the Mikey Garcia-Jessie Vargas bill in Frisco next month.
Yafai retained his WBA belt with a wide points win over Norbelto Jimenez last June, his fifth successful title defence since becoming champion in December 2016.
The Birmingham man has targeted unification clashes at 115lbs, but will firstly take a sizeable step-up in class against Gonzalez, who has responded with two knockout wins since suffering his only two defeats against Srisaket Sor Rungvisai.
“I wanted the biggest possible fight available and after the Juan Francisco Estrada unification fell through, I had the opportunity to fight Chocolatito, the former pound for pound king,” said Yafai.
“Chocolatito is someone that I have idolised as I worked my way up to become world champion myself, so it doesn’t get much bigger than this and it will bring out the best in me. I can’t wait, it is a case of when idols become rivals and I am so honoured to share the ring with him but also show the world that I am an elite world champion.”
Gonzalez had previously propelled himself among the world’s finest pound-for-pound boxers by collecting world titles on his rise through the weight divisions.
“First of all, I would like to thank Eddie Hearn for giving me this opportunity to fight for the world championship,” said Chocolatito. “I know this will be a very hard fight, but it will be worthy of all our efforts and determination.”
“This is a brilliant fight on an absolute monster of a show!” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “Kal Yafai has been waiting for an opportunity like this for a long time and now he gets it against a legend of the sport in Chocolatito. This card in Texas is going to be epic and you can expect Yafai versus Chocolatito to be an all-out war!”