A publican is being treated in hospital after he was stabbed in the back by a disgruntled customer.
Friends of bar owner Martin Coyle (33) said it was miraculous that he was not more seriously injured, or even killed, when a man plunged a kitchen knife into his lower back in the kitchen of the Village Inn in Kerrykeel, Co Donegal.
The father of three also suffered a head injury when he fell to the ground during the assault on Thursday night.
The attack happened after the suspect and another man, who had been drinking in another bar, arrived at the Village Inn at around 10pm.
According to eyewitness accounts, the two men followed Mr Coyle into the kitchen, where he was stabbed with a kitchen knife.
The attacker was pulled off Mr Coyle and fled the scene.
Mr Coyle was rushed to Letterkenny General Hospital, where his condition was described yesterday as "serious but stable".
Friends of the injured man said he was lucky to escape with his life.
"It is a pure miracle that none of his organs were damaged by the knife.
"He is a very lucky man," said one local.
A garda spokesman said no arrests had yet been made, but confirmed they were following a number of definite lines of inquiry.
"We would appeal to anybody who was in the bar at the time of the incident to contact us.
"This was a very serious attack and any information would be appreciated," he added.