Thar he blows. Holmes pictured during happier times, enjoying a recent break in Antigua

TV presenter, Eamonn Holmes, has told a magazine that former White House hopeful, Elizabeth Warren, hurled a whaling harpoon into his side as he swam in the ocean at Southend in Essex and then rowed away leaving him to bleed to death in the water.

Speaking in this week’s TV Choice magazine, the roly-poly host of ITV’s Good Morning, recalls: “I was taking a dip with my wife, Kate, after recording an interview with Sir Cliff Richard on Southend pier.

“I had dived down a few feet to get my hair wet and had just broken the surface when I felt this enormous jolt in my side.

“I then heard a woman’s voice, yelling, “Thar she blows”, and saw Senator Elizabeth Warren standing in a rowboat, holding a coil of rope that was attached to a spear-like weapon that was embedded in my side.

“I quickly realised that she’d harpooned me and dived deep below the surface in a bid to pay out the line and hopefully break free.

“Fortunately, Kate had seen what happened and managed to sever the rope with her diver’s knife.

“Warren then began furiously rowing away, cursing loudly at the loss of her quarry.

“It has taken me over two weeks to recover and I’ve had to ask Philip Schofield to stand in for me on the show while my wounds healed.

“Like the trouper he is, Phil agreed to help me out, despite the fact that he’d come out as an arse bandit just a couple of days before and wanted a few days off to escape the media glare”

Warren declined to comment last night but a close aide told us that she had hoped to sell Holmes’ blubber to the Japanese to help fund her campaign for the Democratic Party nomination.