EAST ORANGE, N.J. — The International Boxing Federation said Wednesday it will strip Oscar De La Hoya of its lightweight championship if he does not fight No. 1 contender Miguel Julio of Colombia in a mandatory defense by July 31.
De La Hoya won the IBF title in Las Vegas on May 6 by stopping Rafael Ruelas in the second round.
Bob Lee, the IBF president, said a major condition of the IBF's sanctioning of the De La Hoya-Ruelas bout was that Julio be next in line for a shot at the title.
"We are aware that, contrary to directives of this organization, De La Hoya has signed for another fight in September," Lee said in a statement, referring to the Sept. 9 bout against Genaro Hernandez.