POLICE have released a 25-year-old man on bail as they continue to investigate a violent attack on a poker player outside a Doncaster pub.
The 37-year-old, from Carcroft, was left fighting for his life after he was beaten up outside the Grove Inn in York Road.
Detectives have not ruled out that the injured man may have been the victim of a grudge attack following a card game in the pub.
Police said he was no longer on the critical list after suffering serious head injuries.
His condition had improved on Tuesday and he remained stable in Doncaster Royal Infirmary.
The younger man was arrested on suspicion of assault and interviewed by officers this week. He has not been charged with any offence.
A spokesman for the force said he was still “helping the police with their inquiries.”
Det Sgt Dave Robertson, of Doncaster CID, added: “At this stage we are trying to find out why he was attacked.
“He and some other men had been at a poker event at The Grove and for whatever reason someone has attacked him outside the premises.
“It could be as a result of what happened during the game but he’s been unable to tell us because of being unconscious.
“We are keen to trace any witnesses, particularly those who took part in the poker game.
“The pub was very busy with poker players who attend regular sessions.
“But we believe the suspect is not one of the regulars but someone who joined in that night.”
Police said the attack took place in the early hours of last Friday.
Officers said he had been in the pub at the poker evening before he was assaulted by another man close to the pub’s car park.
The incident happened around 1.15am.
No weapons were used in the attack.
The licensee of The Grove said he knew nothing about the incident apart from police visiting the premises looking for evidence.
Witnesses should call South Yorkshire Police on 0114 220 2020 quoting incident number 45 of September 23, 2011.
They can also ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.