Greek Australian football player Ioannis Simosis has recently spoken about his gambling addiction and how he managed to break free in an interview with ERA Sports.
The 29-year-old, who is now competing in Australia for Adelaide Olympic, says his 38 month gambling dry streak wasn’t easy, but it’s a battle that needed to be fought.
“Today I am completing 38 months of abstinence from gambling. I am 38 months clean. I had already tried all the gambling options such as casino, horse racing, etc.
“I remember myself starting with simple betting with friends in billiards from the age of 12-13. Especially when I left for Athens for Panionios after 15, I was alone and had my own money, I was getting away more and more”, he said initially.
“I wore my good clothes, we also had a good name in the neighborhood, I played football, I was sociable and everyone said the best, but in the end I had a lot of faces.”
Ioannis says up until three years ago, he was constantly changing teams due to the instability of his character.
“My addiction has had consequences for my professional career, which started at Panionios when he was just 17 years old in the Greek Super League, but when you have lost a boat of money, you cannot be completely focused,” he added.
The Greek Australian warned that it’s a battle fought amongst players in all countries, not just Greece, and people must be made more aware of the dangers.