A badminton coach accused of rape told a jury yesterday that he was pursuing 'true love' by dating a 13-year-old girl. Tam Chi-shing, 30, said he had previously had many 'upsetting' relationships with women because they were too materialistic. He told the Court of First Instance he fell in love with the girl because she really cared about him. Testifying for the first time, Tam said he suggested marrying the girl when she reached the age of 16 because he was a responsible person. He admitted to having sex with the girl three times - at a hotel in Mongkok and at his home in Kowloon Bay. But he has denied raping her twice and taking her for an abortion. He also has pleaded not guilty to raping another girl, also 13 at the time, three times in 1998 and molesting a third, 14, twice. When questioned by his defence barrister, Jeremy Cheung Man-fai, Tam, an electronic product sales manager, said he became a part-time badminton coach in 1991. He told the court he later set up a badminton club where he continued coaching on a voluntary basis. He started teaching badminton in two secondary schools in 1998. The girl he says he fell in love with joined the badminton club with her sister in the summer of 1996. The court heard that he did not pay much attention to the alleged victim at first, but their relationship developed gradually after chatting on the telephone. They had sex for the first time in about December 1997 and, after that, Tam said he had repeatedly suggested to the girl that they tell her parents about the affair. When asked whether he found the relationship unhealthy and that it should be stopped, he said: 'What I was pursuing was true love. The feeling I had was affection towards her. I was upset by many romantic relationships I had in the past. I have never given any thought to what she [the girl] looked like or any other things. I just hope there will be somebody to care about me.' Of women, he said: 'I felt what they had in mind was material things.' Tam also told the court his marriage to his badminton assistant was false as he just wanted to apply for a bigger unit. The girl, now 16, has previously testified that she disagreed with a defence suggestion that she had been deeply in love with Tam. She has told the court that she hated Tam and had continued to see him because she wanted to kill him in revenge. The case continues on Monday before Deputy Judge Peter Longley.