Vaimoana Tapaleao is the New Zealand Herald's Pacific Affairs and People reporter.

Still two Lotto wins unclaimed

Pak'nSave Dunedin Lotto supervisor Abby Pegg celebrates a Dunedin couple's $13.3 million win. Photo / Otago Daily Times, Gregor Richardson
Pak'nSave Dunedin Lotto supervisor Abby Pegg celebrates a Dunedin couple's $13.3 million win. Photo / Otago Daily Times, Gregor Richardson

The country's latest Lotto millionaires may not yet know they are sitting on a golden ticket, with officials still waiting to hear from two of the weekend's big Powerball winners.

Lotto spokeswoman Emilia Mazur said just after 7pm they were yet to hear from two winners who had both won $13.3 million in the mega $40 million must-win draw on Saturday.

The tickets were bought at the Oparau Roadhouse shop near Kawhia and on MyLotto to a player from Hamilton.

A Dunedin couple, who bought a ticket from Pak'nSave Dunedin, claimed their $13.3 million after calling a local supermarket after-hours on Saturday night when they realised they may have won the big one.

John Moyle was at a function at his local rugby club when he received a text asking if he could open his supermarket to check a Lotto ticket that might be worth $40 million.

The people needing the ticket checked were "a friend, of a friend, of a friend" of his wife Julie and the Fresh Choice Green Island owner didn't hesitate to get the ball rolling.

Moyle called his checkout supervisor to meet him, his wife and the ticket-holders at the supermarket.

He said the supervisor was "shaking" as she put the ticket barcode through the scanner; the machine beeped and the screen read $13.36 million. Moyle said the couple were "blown away" and hugged after the ticket was confirmed.

"We had a beer and a Champagne in store and started doing the paperwork and Lotto rang."

Being part of such a big win was "unbelievable," Moyle said.

"I was stoked, so I don't know how they coped ... I struggle to grasp having that amount of money go into your bank account and they were the same - they were over the moon, but were in disbelief."

The couple talked about spending the money on houses, cars and travel.

Moyle did not know the couple and did not ask them their names.

Mazur said last night the other two winners were still unknown and possibly may not yet realise they had won. "They may just not know - or they know but are just waiting to [make contact] during the week. Anything's possible."

Mazur said on one occasion, a man who won more than $20 million realised he had won on Sunday, but "put the ticket in his wallet and went back to work on Monday".

He claimed his winnings later in the week, she said.

Lotto's big numbers

• Three big winners took a $13.3m share of Saturday's draw.

• More than 2.7m tickets bought.More than 3000 tickets sold a minute between 5 and 6pm before the big draw.

• Nearly 100,000 people tried to check their tickets online, causing the site to crash.

• Winning numbers 29, 27, 37, 18, 33, 3; bonus number was 36, Powerball was 7.

- Additional reporting: Otago Daily Times

- NZ Herald

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