Young man wins $50m jackpot
A MELBOURNE man in his 20s has been revealed as one of two lucky winners of last night's record-breaking Powerball draw.
Speaking to officials late this morning to confirm his mammoth prize, the winner - who wishes to remain anonymous - confessed he knew he had become a multi-millionaire when he checked his entry last night before bed.
"I'm trying to remain as calm as possible," he said.
"I only bought this entry last night on the OzLotteries app before the draw closed.
"I'm going to do the right thing. This win is life changing.
"I'm going to look after my whole family - invest money in property and shares. It will make a massive difference to a lot of people."
Another entry purchased in the Canterbury-Bankstown region of southwest Sydney has also been revealed as one of the two division one winning entries.
Two entries have grabbed a $50 million slice of the equal-largest division one lottery prize pool in Australian history.
As the southern Sydney entry was not registered to a Players Club card, NSW Lotteries officials have no way to contact the ticketholder and break that mind-blowing news.
This means the winner may have yet to discover their new multi-million-dollar status and could be walking around with a ticket worth $50 million in their pocket, wallet or handbag.
As desperate punters rushed to find out whether they would win the cash last night, the Oz Lotteries website crashed.
Minutes before the draw was aired on TV, the site's error page declared: "It's not you, it's us!"
A ticket sold in Sydney and another online to someone in Victoria were the only two to get a taste of the $100 million Powerball jackpot by correctly selecting 3, 13, 27, 31, 32, 33, 35 and the powerball 3.
Almost 3.5 million other players collected a return ranging from a division two prize of $122,000 down to ninth division's $10.55.
The Lott spokesman Matt Hart told news.com.au this morning there seemed "to be lots of people claiming to have won".
One prank caller even tricked Kyle and Jackie O into believing he was a jackpot winner on live radio this morning.
The caller said his name was "Mr Lee" and he was calling from "City Wok", a reference to South Park.
A $100m first division prize was already the largest Powerball jackpot in history with an Oz Lotto draw in 2012 reaching the mark. But with that pool also shared, a Hervey Bay, Queensland couple who won $70 million in 2016 remain the nation's largest individual prize winners.
The Lott said the Sydney entry was unregistered while the online entrant hadn't supplied complete contact details.
"While we are unable to confirm the win with either of our winners, we can guarantee that when they discover the news, their life is set to change when their bank balance balloons by a whopping $50 million," spokesman Matthew Hart said in a statement.
Newsagents across the nations had queues out the door on Thursday despite the odds of winning first prize being one in 134 million.
Australian Gambling Research Centre manager Rebecca Jenkinson said three factors were at play in luring people to play a lottery.
Humans have difficulty processing and understanding the minuscule odds of winning first prize, coming up a few numbers brings on the near-miss effect and we dream, she said.
"The reason we've seen queues out the door is we've all got that hope and it's nice to dream," Dr Jenkinson told AAP.
"We've seen people win before, we've heard people win before so it's the 'why not us?' at play." Dr Jenkinson says about half of all Australians adults have taken part in an official lottery in the past year while about a third play at least monthly.
A lot of Aussies would have been choosing their numbers very carefully for tonight's draw, while others would have gone for the random approach and left it up to fate.
While every ball has an equal chance of being drawn, The Lott has revealed that there are some numbers that have statistically appeared more than others.
The top five winning numbers are 19, 9, 15, 16 and 17 and the ones that have come up the least include 13, 3, 7, 6 and 14.
The next chance to win big will be the $20 million Saturday Lotto Superdraw on September 1.