BRANDON Mavuta has revealed that his marijuana addiction shattered his appetite and left him struggling to eat or sleep.

Speaking after Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) this week lifted his suspension for failing an in-house drug test, the 27-year-old bowling all-rounder admitted the habit nearly ruined his career and life.

“It started off as something that I was taking for fun and then it ended up as something that I was addicted to,” Mavuta said.

 “I couldn’t sleep and most of the time I had loss of appetite and I ended up running to take marijuana . . . I regret it. It has actually been a lesson to me.”

 The former Zimbabwe Under-19 captain was slapped with a four-month ban from competitive cricket after he returned a positive result for the recreational drug during an in-house anti-doping test in December.

 As part of his rehabilitation, he was ordered to train under the ZC high performance programme.

 “I have learnt quite a lot in terms of how it happened and the effects of testing positive,” Mavuta said. 

 “But then the ban and rehabilitation that I had for the past four months has been helping me out because I have been working quite hard on my game. 

 “It has actually been sort of a blessing in disguise because I had to spend more time focusing on my game and now I am fitter and stronger . . .”

 Mavuta warned fellow sports-persons and other young people to desist from taking drugs.

 “The advice I can give to people, youngsters or fellow sports-persons, is that it’s the worst thing to do — taking drugs — because it affects you in the long run and once you become (addicted) it will be very difficult for you to back off it,” he said. 

 “I am happy now that I am out of it and managed to overcome it. If you are doing it, please, it’s not too late to stop . . . It’s not good for you guys. Trust me, it affects your life a lot.

 “I am hungrier, I am determined to bounce back and the bounce-back is going to be even bigger than what I was before because I have been in the high performance (programme) for those four months.”

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