It’s a $5.3 million Merry Powerball Christmas
Powerball players are on a winning streak, with the jackpot being struck three times in the previous two weeks.
Wednesday’s Powerball winner is the latest multimillionaire in New Zealand and, having just collected their prize of $5.3 million, is looking forward to having a Christmas to remember with their family.
The winner, who wishes to remain anonymous, had no idea his life was about to change when he went into the Lotto store to check his ticket. After putting it through the machine, the woman behind the counter asked him to come into the back room.
“My first thought was ‘what have I done wrong?’ I’ve never been asked into the back room before,” the winner said.
“Once she told me what had happened – that I’d won $5.3 million, I just started crying and I was shaking so much I had to sit down.
“They were just so lovely in the store though, they got me a cup of coffee and helped me fill in the paperwork and generally made sure I was OK.”
Once the winner had regained his composure, the next stop was to head home and tell his wife.
“I was doing some gardening when he drove up and said to me ‘you better come up to the house’, so I knew something was up,” the winner’s wife said.
“When I got into the house, he was pouring us a drink. I just looked at him and said ‘you haven’t won Lotto, have you?’ because I knew he was down the store checking our ticket.
“He had happy tears running down his face and he gave me a big hug and said ‘yip, we did it’.”
The couple can’t believe their good fortune and are looking forward to sharing the news with close family, while they compile their own Christmas wish list.
“We want to buy a car or a boat, and a house, and we want to go on holiday. Our minds are just whirring – so we’re going to put it in the bank for the time being and not make any big decisions until next year,” the winner said.
“To be honest, we’re just a couple of hard workers who have hit the gold mine and we just can’t believe our good luck.”
The winning ticket was sold at Woodys Winners in Wellsford for the Lotto draw on Wednesday 21 December.
This is the third Powerball win in two weeks, following on from the previous week where a young woman from Auckland won $10 million with Powerball on the Saturday night and then just four days later a Wellington man won $5 million.
13 Kiwis have won Powerball so far this year, with prizes ranging from $4 million to $44 million. The jackpot for tonight’s Powerball draw is $4 million.