Thorbjorn Olesen gives evidence in sexual assault trial: I was 'embarrassed and felt horrible'

Ryder Cup winner Thorbjorn Olesen left court on Tuesday after giving evidence on the second day of a trial where he denies charges of sexual assault, assault by beating and being drunk on an aircraft from the US to the UK.

Giving evidence earlier in the day, the Danish golfer had said he was "embarrassed and felt horrible" after being accused of drunkenly groping a woman on a British Airways flight from the Nashville to London following the World Golf Championships-FedEx St Jude Invitational in Memphis, Tennessee in July 2019.

Witnesses have described the "completely bizarre" behaviour of the five-time European Tour winner, who was ranked 51st in the world at the time, during the eight-hour flight where fellow professionals including England's Ian Poulter and Justin Rose were also on board.

On Monday, Aldersgate House Nightingale Court, in central London, heard that Olesen ran around the cabin "like a little boy", was unable to operate the toilet door, and became verbally abusive to cabin crew when challenged.

He is said to have pushed one BA worker, kissed another's hand before making the sign of the cross, and touched a woman's breast before being led back to his first-class seat, where he cried before falling asleep, but later urinated on another passenger's seat.

The 31-year-old -- who has slumped to 432 in the world rankings -- told the jury on Tuesday he would never "consciously" risk his career by committing a crime and has no memory of the flight after taking sleeping pills.

Olesen said he had not slept well for weeks, having played several big tournaments, including the Open, and planned to go straight to sleep on the plane.

He said he drank two beers, two glasses of red wine with a sushi platter meal on board a private jet, and one vodka and cranberry juice before boarding the flight.

And he took two melanin tablets, which he regularly uses to combat jet lag, along with two Ambien/Zolpidem pills put into his washbag by his partner, Lauren Zafer, an accountant at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Olesen said he would "never" have taken the pills had he known they were prescription-only or that side-effects included "sleep walking" and "amnesia".

He said he "felt fine" as he boarded the plane and was handed a drink, adding: "My last memory is getting a glass of champagne and sitting down in my seat and I think I remember taking off."

Olesen said he had no recollection of asking for a vodka and cranberry juice, drinking pink champagne from another passenger's glass, or getting trapped in the toilet.

He also denied remembering being abusive to cabin crew, touching a woman's breast or urinating on another passenger's seat.

Questioned by prosecutor Max Hardy, Olesen denied he was "in a party mood" when he boarded the flight and said he had "definitely not" taken the pills with alcohol "for fun" but "wanted to try to sleep all the way to London. I wasn't thinking about partying or anything," he told the court.

The trial continues.