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Beijing gold medal diver turned to drugs

Nov 19, 2012, 6:35 PM EST

Leo Mason-USA TODAY Sports Leo Mason-USA TODAY Sports

Gold medal 10m platform diver Matthew Mitcham reveals how he endured drug addiction following the 2008 Olympics in his autobiography, Twists and Turns, set to be released Nov. 26.

The young Australian won gold in Beijing by becoming the first diver to ever score perfect tens from all four judges, but admits that despite his his victory, his inability to reach the No. 1 world ranking after the Olympics caused him depression that eventually turned him toward crystal meth.

Mitcham says in the book that he used the drugs to “take my mind off things that were upsetting me, to make me feel better about myself,” but says that he rebounded from his addictions with help from Narcotics Anonymous, hypnotherapy, and his family.

Mitcham failed to qualify for the London final, but is already training for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Last week the Australian Olympic Committed passed a proposal that forces athletes to disclose their doping history, but AOC spokesman Mike Tancred told the Associated Press that Mitcham’s drug use won’t be a factor since the measure specifically seeks out performance enhancers.

“This drug is a performance ruiner,” Mancred concluded about the recreational drug. “Not enhancer.”