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Matt Torcasio knows too well the the crippling effects of his gambling addiction.
As an 18-year-old, his gambling started as a social activity but soon turned into a crippling habit.
“We’d always end up at a pub on a Sunday and one thing led to another,” he said.
The first time he gambled he won $3,000 on the pokies. The second time a week later; he won $6,700 on the horses.
The then second-year apprentice plumber was earning only $300 a week and was immediately hooked by that extraordinary run of luck.
Within six months, he was gambling his entire wage on a weekly basis and had spent over a quarter of a million dollars over the next seven years.
“I knew within a year or two that I had a problem. It overwhelmed and overpowered me and everything I was doing.
“I guess the tipping point was when I started trying to win the money back, and when I didn’t, I would hit rock bottom.”
Last year, the 27-year-old took part in Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation’s “100 Day Challenge” and is now an ambassador at the organisation.
“When I look back to gambling and think about doing it again, I get disappointed in myself. Having savings and having bought myself a car now – there are too many positives to go back. That’s what drives me.”
Matt Torcasio will be guest tweeting through the show.
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