A YOUNG Newsome man told a jury of his fight for life when a stocky rugby player smashed his way through the patio doors and attacked.
James Samuels, 22, of Littlewood Croft, Newsome, was at the home of work colleague Kristienne Wood, 21, in Woodburn Avenue, Earlsheaton, when her jealous ex-boyfriend stormed in.
Samuels has pleaded not guilty at Leeds Crown Court to the murder of 18-year-old Mark Fisher.
Wood denies perverting the course of justice.
At 1.30am on September 22, 2002, Mr Fisher came calling at Wood's home with his friend Patrick Quinn after they had been out drinking.
Samuels said Kristienne went into the kitchen and there was a verbal shouting match.
"I could hear a male voice saying `who are you in there with?'
Samuels said Mr Fisher punched him on the face and threw him in the corner.
He got up and hit Mr Fisher with a jewellery box.
"I was knocked to the floor, on my back. He jumped on top of me and started gouging my eyes with his thumbs.
Samuels said he managed to escape and saw Kristienne being push- ed backwards by Mr Fisher so he went up to him and pushed him.
Samuels said Mr Fisher began hitting him again.
Mr Fisher had him by the throat and was squeezing.
Samuels said he reached out with his left hand and found a knife. He brandished it in front of Mr Fisher, thinking he might back off, but he began punching again.
"I transferred the knife to my right hand. I was feeling weak and definitely desperate.
"I swung my right arm over his left shoulder and cut him with the knife somewhere in the top of his back.
"I wanted to get him off me. I was fearing for my life. I was thinking this is it. This man is going to kill me."
Mr Fisher suffered nine stab wounds to his face, back, torso and buttock. One pierced a vein, artery and lung.
The trial continues.