A man left for dead after a knife attack in Doncaster claims he was jumped by 20 'travellers' after he won a boxing title.
Brett May, an undefeated prize fighter, was left in intensive care after being slashed across his throat, across his back and down his arms - almost severing one of his limbs.
CRIME: Man arrested for attempted murder over stabbing in Doncaster shop
The 27-year-old, from Hatfield, needed 85 stitches to the wound across his neck and spent hours in theatre undergoing a number of operations.
COURT: Doncaster man jailed for attacking woman with baseball bat while her young son slept upstairs
He was airlifted to the Northern General Hospital because of severe blood loss in the attack.
APPEAL: Gunman still on the run after shooting at house in Doncaster
Brett remains in hospital today - six days after the attack - and expects to spend another week receiving hospital treatment, including plastic surgery.
Speaking from his hospital bed, Brett, who runs a tanning shop in Doncaster, said violence flared after he left the pub in Stainforth to make his way home.
He said two 4x4 type cars pulled up alongside him in Field Road and 20 men brandishing knives jumped out and chased him into a nearby shop, where violence erupted.
He suspects that the gang attacked him in a bid to damage his reputation because he is undefeated in the ring and recently won a national heavyweight title.
Brett, who has been boxing since he was 11, said he knocked three of his attackers unconscious as he defended himself from the blades but was eventually overcome by the mob and ended up on the ground.
"I remember the two Jeeps puling up and about 20 of them getting out with machetes, Stanley knives and all sorts of blades as they cornered me into the shop," he said.
"I punched one, knocking him to the ground then another nearly chopped half of my arm off as he swung at me with a machete.
"There was about 20 of them, all travellers, with all different types of knives literally slashing and cutting me to bits. One of them slashed me across my throat, leaving me needing 85 stitches.
"From my neck down, my whole back is totally covered with slash wounds and my scalp needed glued after they stabbed me there too."
He added: "This was all about trying to damage my reputation as a prize fighter because I am undefeated.
"Nobody has ever gone past three rounds with me. But they had every knife possible - rambo, machetes, Stanley, craft.
"I thought that if I was going to die then I would go down fighting. It was fight or die.
"I wouldn't have minded if it had been a fair fight, but using knives to try to take your life, that's different."
A 30-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder yesterday and remained in police custody last night.
Detective Inspector Steve Smith, from Doncaster CID, said: "We believe there were a group of people involved in this incident, known to each other, who we are working hard to identify.
"This morning, we arrested a 30-year-old man from Stainforth in connection to the incident. He has been arrested on suspicion of attempt murder and remains in police custody at this time.
"As our enquiries continue, I’d like to ask anyone who hasn’t yet come forward with information that could assist the investigation to get in touch. A number of people were in the area at the time the offence occurred and I’d urge them to contact us. They may have information that could help."
Call South Yorkshire Police on 101 and quote 1,060 of 11 July 2018.
Crimestoppers can be contacted, anonymously, on 0800 555111.