| 3.5°C Dublin

It could be you...€11m Lotto fever takes hold

HUNDREDS of Lotto tickets will be sold every minute today as fever strikes over a €11m jackpot.

Now in its 12th year, the jackpot was last won on February 15 by a syndicate from North County Dublin who took home a cool €4.8m.

The €11m jackpot is the largest so far in 2012.

Paula McEvoy, spokesperson for the National Lottery, said over one million tickets will be issued across the country in anticipation of tonight's big draw -- the 11th largest since it began.


"When it comes to a jackpot of this size, people do play in large numbers, which is great news for worthy causes because one third of all sales go to charities. We fully expect to see approximately 800 tickets per minute today from 11am and that will peak at roughly 1,000 in the late afternoon."

Ms McEvoy has advised players to purchase tickets early, to avoid a stampede at checkouts this evening.

"Up to 60pc of Lottery players play on the day of a draw, with the majority of players buying their tickets between 5pm and 7.45pm, right before the draw. We'd encourage players to play early and avoid the queues."

Players and syndicates are also being advised to reconsider playing typical combinations or they could end up being disappointed.

"There'll be between 1,000 and 1,200 winners if everyone picks typical combinations of numbers -- like one, two, three, four, five and six, or two, four, six, eight, 10, 12, for example," added Ms McEvoy.

RTE presenter Nuala Carey will draw out the winning numbers tonight.

She told the Herald there's always a fantastic buzz leading up to the Saturday draw.

"I always think it's great when it gets very big, there tends to be a lot of excitement as well when it's on the weekend because more families participate.

"People offer to give me their numbers, I've been asked to kiss Lotto tickets before, too."

The broadcaster revealed she'd like to see the luck shared between a number of friends or colleagues.

"I always think its lovely when a syndicate wins ... But no matter who gets it, it'll change a number of people's lives regardless," she added.

The last time the Lotto jackpot reached €11m was on September 24, 2011.