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$16m Lotto winner: 'I didn't know what to do with myself'

NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thursday, 18 April 2019, 3:00PM

"I immediately jumped up from the table and started dancing around the room. I was laughing and crying at the same time — I didn't know what to do with myself."

The $16.2 million Auckland Lotto winner only found out this morning that she had won last night's big Lotto Powerball prize.

"I was up bright and early this morning sorting some things out in the kitchen when I heard on the radio that someone from Auckland had won $16.25 million last night and they bought their ticket online," said the woman, a regular Lotto player.

She finished what she was doing and checked her ticket online.

"I logged into MyLotto and the draw started straight away. As each ball dropped, a number was circled on my ticket. When it got to the fourth number, I thought 'No way', but they just kept coming — it was unbelievable!" said the woman

With all six numbers and the Powerball number all circled on one line, the woman knew she had won the big one.

With tears rolling down her cheeks, the woman frantically tried to call her husband to let him know the life-changing news.

"I think I might have called him about ten times, but he wasn't picking up," she said.

When he finally answered his phone, the woman asked if he was sitting down before breaking the news.

"When I told him what had happened, he didn't believe me. It was such a shock to the system. He wanted to come home and see it for himself."

And that's exactly what he did. He hopped in the car and raced home.

"I pulled into the driveway and started tooting the horn expecting her to come running out, but she didn't come," said the man.

Instead, he was greeted with an unusual sight as he entered into the lounge.

"I was so excited and had all this energy — I wanted to calm myself down before my husband got home. So I decided to grab the exercycle put in front of telly and start peddling," laughed the woman.

The pair checked the ticket one more time before heading into Lotto NZ's head office to claim their prize.

The couple said they were now taking the time to let everything sink in.

"This is completely life-changing for us. We're going to invest most, help out friends and family and give to charity," said the winner.

"Oh, and we'll do some travel too… actually we could probably go to the Rugby World Cup now!"


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