A Christchurch man has described the "surreal and life-changing" moment he won $5.5 million with Powerball First Division on Saturday - while playing the same numbers for years after winning a prize with them five years ago.
"I bought a Dip ticket about five years ago and won $90 on it – I figured the numbers were pretty lucky, so decided to adopt them as my lucky numbers and play them every week," the man, who wishes to remain anonymous, explained.
He discovered he had won after checking his ticket on Saturday evening.
"I saw the first couple of numbers circled off on my ticket and thought that was quite a good start – then they just kept coming. By the time the fifth number was circled I was making a fair bit of noise.
"When that sixth number was circled, well, I just couldn't believe it - and then came the Powerball! When I saw that, I leapt up and started running around the room screaming."
After taking a screenshot, he rushed to tell his partner of the win - and she couldn't quite believe the news.
"I showed her the picture of my ticket with the prize amount and she just looked at me and said, 'What's that - $5500?' I had to tell her to look again. I guess we aren't used to looking at a number with so many zeros!"
The man went out for a walk to clear his head and pick up something for dinner - all while smiling from ear to ear.
"I couldn't stop smiling and laughing as I walked down the street, it must've been pretty funny to see. The whole thing was just so surreal and life-changing."
However, despite the win, he said he and his partner won't be spending the money unwisely.
"We're not extravagant people and have always been careful with money, so we keep looking at things and thinking, 'Nah, that's too expensive' – then I catch myself.
"We're going to be pretty sensible with the winnings. It's a life-changing prize and I want to make it last, but I know that we're going to buy a house and a new car, and help out the family. We might splash out on a nice holiday somewhere, too."