A young Auckland couple were in "disbelief" after winning $17 million with Powerball First Division this weekend.
The couple, who wish to remain anonymous, told Lotto NZ they were having a quiet start to their Sunday morning and completely unaware of what was to come.
“I was up early with the kids on Sunday morning while my wife had a much-deserved sleep-in,” the husband said.
“I was flicking through things on my phone when I saw that Powerball had been won and that the winning ticket had been sold at West City Lotto, which is where my wife will often pick up our tickets.”
He woke his wife to see if she had picked up a ticket at West City Lotto that week.
“All of a sudden, I was wide awake. I hopped out of bed and grabbed the ticket so we could check it right away,” said the woman.
“My husband and I sat next to each other in bed and I checked the ticket while he read the winning numbers to me. When I realised that we had the first three numbers, my hands started to shake – let alone when we had all six.
“Then I saw we had the winning Powerball number too… we just couldn’t believe it. We sat there in total disbelief, checking and re-checking the ticket,” she said.
The couple jumped straight in the car to share the good news with their family.
“My husband and I both had tears in our eyes when we arrived, so everyone was pretty worried and thought we had bad news to share. Then we told them we had won $17 million with Powerball and suddenly everyone was crying tears of joy,” said the woman.
The lucky couple then headed to their local Lotto store and checked their ticket under the self-checker to make sure they really had won the big one.
“We were so relieved when we saw ‘First Division winner’ pop up on the screen. We knew we wanted to take the ticket straight to Lotto NZ’s head office on Monday, so I just slipped the ticket back in my pocket and headed home,” said the woman.
Following confirmation of th ewin, the couple faced a big decision – where to keep their winning ticket.
“I ended up hiding the ticket in a cupboard, so I knew it was safely tucked away. I kept popping back and checking on the ticket so many times that day, just to make sure it was still there and that I wasn’t dreaming – I’ve never been in that cupboard so often,” laughed the woman.
With their $17 million Powerball prize now claimed, the couple told Lotto they are just beginning to come to terms with the magnitude of their win.
“This win has changed our lives overnight and we are still in a bit of shock to be honest. Family is incredibly important to us, so we want to make sure the win lasts for generations. We are just so excited to be able to set up our family for the future – we feel so incredibly lucky,” said the man.
The $17.16 million winning ticket was sold at West City in Auckland and was made up of $17 million from Powerball First Division and $166,667 from Lotto First Division.