Man survives 18 hours at sea by clinging on to football lost by boys on beach
A holiday maker known as Ivan has described the incredible story of how he survived on sea thanks to just a small inflatable ball.
Ivan, 30, found himself in difficulty on Saturday, July 9, when he became caught up in powerful currents off the coast of Myti Beach in Kassandra, Greece.
Friends who were worried alerted the coastguard but Ivan, from North Macedonia, was declared lost at sea after a frantic search effort.
Now he says he miraculously survived when a child’s ball floated towards him in the ocean .
He clung onto the ball to help him float until rescuers spotted him some 18 hours later.
Ivan was pulled out of the water on Sunday and has since recovered from his ordeal.
But his friend Martin Jovanovski, who was also swept out to sea at the same time, is still missing as at press time.
A photo of Ivan posing with the ball, his dad and the mayor of Kassandra, Anastasia Chalkia, is trending in Greece.
Also, coincidentally, a mum who saw his story came forward to reveal that the ball was lost by her sons 10 days before the tourist was rescued.
Ivan told local media after the rescue that the ball was the reason for his survival – despite it only being half-inflated.