Baltimore middleweight Percy Harris will make the first defense of his International Boxing Federation Intercontinental title against unbeaten Juan Medina in Oviedo, Spain, Sept. 19.
Harris (15-3) has fought only once since he won the title by outpointing Thomas Tate in Italy last December. He was stopped in the 10th round by United States Boxing Association champion Lamar Parks at Madison Square Garden four months ago. More recently, he pulled out of a cable-TV (ESPN) bout last month against Merqui Sosa in Atlantic City.
"From now on, if I'm going to take a tough fight, I'm going to have a title at stake," said Harris.
He will train for the Medina match at the Triple Threat gym in Newark, N.J., where he will have an opportunity to spar against cruiserweight champions Bobby Czyz WBA) and Alfred Cole (IBF). Tommy Parks, who works with both champions, will be Harris' new trainer.
Harris, 28, who has a history of frequently changing managers, has added Baha Muhammad of New Jersey as an adviser.
Medina (11-0-1) is ranked No. 1 in the Intercontinental ratings of junior-middleweights, but the IBF frequently allows highly ranked fighters to switch divisions.
If Harris beats Medina, he envisions a fall match against World Boxing Association middleweight champion Reggie Johnson. Johnson was scheduled to fight Parks next month on a Murad Muhammad promotion, but reportedly is seeking a different opponent.
NOTES: USBA junior-middleweight champion Vincent Pettway will have to wait a little longer to challenger for the IBF 154-pound title owned by Gianfranco Rosi of Italy. The IBF ordered a rematch for Rosi against Gilbert Dele of France after Dele lost a controversial split decision in Monte Carlo last month. Pettway (35-4), ranked No. 2, is in line to fight the winner.