Lotto fever is raising temperatures during a bitterly cold spell in Mayo as news of the record-breaking €19.06m jackpot win, by one lucky player, filtered through the county yesterday.
Speculation and rumour have been running rife since the lottery bosses announced Mayo as the location for the historic rollover jackpot win.
The Irish Independent has received tips from all over the county, including Claremorris, Castlebar, Charlestown, Balla, Turlough and Knock.
The town and shop where the winning ticket was sold won’t be officially revealed until later today. In the meantime, players are urged to check their tickets and hope for the best.
Saturday’s draw broke a 62-draw drought without a jackpot winner.
The jackpot had remained capped at €19.06m since October 2, after it had not been won since last June.
Last November, TD Bernard Durkan became the first member of the Government to call for an investigation into the “unwinnable” jackpot.
Lottery bosses subsequently sought and received regulatory approval for a historic must-win draw.
Premier Lotteries Ireland chief executive Andrew Algeo told the Oireachtas Finance Committee the company wanted to introduce the draw to ensure “an improbably long wait for a capped jackpot win cannot occur again”.
Saturday night’s draw is now the most substantial jackpot win in the Lotto’s history.
The numbers drawn were: 2, 9, 16, 30, 37, 40, while the bonus number was 23.
The “will-be-won” jackpot could have seen it shared among those who matched five numbers and a bonus number in the absence of an overall winner, or, if still no winners, among those who matched five. However, the process was not required when one lucky Mayo player matched all six numbers.
Almost €5.5m was shared by 149 players who matched five numbers and the bonus.