Watch devastating moment 88ft yacht belonging to poker player erupts in flames

Formentera: Superyacht on fire

This is the shocking moment an 88-foot yacht, believed to be owned by a professional poker player nicknamed ‘The Lion’, erupted in flames off the idyllic Mediterranean island of Formentera.

Five crew and 12 passengers were on board but everyone managed to make it off in time, in spite of the speed at which the boat was engulfed in flames.

Incredibly, only one person – a Spanish member of the crew – needed hospital treatment for minor burns, according to regional authorities.

The alarm was raised at 6pm yesterday as the yacht was anchored off Es Cavall d’en Borras beach in the Ses Salines Natural Park.

Onlookers were aghast as the yacht, which costs £46,000 to charter in summer, went up in flames.

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Smoke rolled out of the boat, blackening the sky. Whether the owner, Diego Gomez Gonzalez, known in the poker world as The Lion, was on the vessel remains unknown.

Gonzalez earned his nickname after appearing at the final table of the European Poker Tour in Prague in a full lion costume.

The Madrid-born gambler began playing poker with his friends, before moving to online games and then the national circuit.

His most lucrative career win was finishing fifth in the European Poker Tour in Prague, where he took home £200,000.

The 34-year-old also came second in the EPT Master’s Final in Dortmund the year after, winning £30,000.

The now destroyed boat is described online as being available for “out-of-this-world charter vacations”.

It sleeps 12 in a VIP cabin, one double cabin and four twin cabins.

The stunning yacht is complete with a deck-jacuzzi and has waterskis, paddleboards and snorkelling equipment.

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The fire is believed to have spread through the boat in a matter of minutes.

The Spanish coast guard took the boat further out to sea to put out the flames.

It’s unclear whether the occupants had chartered the vessel or whether they were acquaintances of Gonzalez.

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