A millionaire businessman accused of trying to murder his 38-year-old wife has told an Old Bailey jury he wanted to hurt her like she hurt him.
Philip Cowell, 44, of Old Cheyne Court, Old Romney, Kent, denies the attempted murder of his wife Faith in July 2005. He admits causing grievous bodily harm.
He told the jury he hit her with a bat and tried to stop her from shouting.
The prosecution claim he could not cope with his marriage ending and attempted to fake his wife's suicide.
Mr Cowell told the court he took a bundle of his wife's clothes on to Dungeness beach, where he cuddled them.
He said: "I just could not believe she was going to take the most precious things away from me. She seemed so cold and uncaring about it."
Mr Cowell then ran back to his farmhouse home.
He cried as he told the court: "I just did not know what I was thinking. I just felt very angry with Faith. I was hurting so much at that point."
He said he was not a violent person and to this day did not know why he had taken up the bat.
Mr Cowell told the jury it was like waking up in a nightmare and he just wanted to hold and comfort his wife and stop her from shouting.
"I picked something off the bed and put it over her mouth," he said.
The prosecution alleged Mr Cowell tried to suffocate his wife and then intended to fake her suicide by leaving a pile of her clothes on the beach and her car nearby.
James Counsell, prosecuting, said as he realised his wife was serious about leaving him "he could not cope with the prospect of losing her and the financial implications of the breakdown of the marriage".
The case continues.