$13.3 million Te Awamutu winner claims prize
Three lucky Lotto players shared the $40 million jackpot following Powerball’s Must Be Won draw on Saturday, and now the third and final winner has claimed his prize.
The Te Awamutu local had no idea that he’d won until he headed into his local supermarket to pick up some supplies and decided to check his ticket at the same time.
“I had no idea that anyone in the area had won, so I certainly wasn’t expecting anything,” the winner said.
“The ticket went through the machine and then the woman behind the counter asked me to come into the back office, and I thought ‘what’s going on here?’
“When she told me that I’d won and then how much… I can’t tell you the first words out of my mouth, but let’s just say there was quite a bit of swearing,” laughed the winner.
While the win was initially “quite overwhelming”, the winner has spent the past day “walking around with the biggest smile on my face”.
The man feels even luckier knowing that he almost gave the winning ticket away.
“I actually bought two tickets for the draw on the weekend, and I gave one to a friend for her birthday.
“I called her up after I found out I’d won and said to her ‘you must be the unluckiest person in New Zealand. Everyone else had 1 in 3.8 million odds of winning, but your odds were 50/50’. Luckily she sees the funny side and is really happy for me.
“I had her and some other mates around for a couple of drinks after I found out about the win, so we could all celebrate together. Everyone’s been so supportive – the truth is that I really am one of the luckiest people in New Zealand.”
The winner, who wishes to remain anonymous, is still deciding what to do with his winnings. He is looking forward to being able to help friends and family and, in the meantime, has enjoyed splashing out a little on himself.
“I went out and bought some new clothes. Nothing too flash, but it was the first time I haven’t had to look at the price tag. It’s such an unreal feeling.”
The winning ticket was bought from Oparau Roadhouse in Kawhia. Oparau Roadhouse has been a Lotto retailer for 29 years and have been selling Lotto NZ games since 1987 when Lotto was first introduced.