Tess Nichol is an NZME. News Service reporter.

Couple who sold ticket for biggest ever Powerball win in the draw tonight

People can be very superstitious when it comes to Lotto. Photo / File
People can be very superstitious when it comes to Lotto. Photo / File

The woman who sold the winning ticket for the country's biggest ever Powerball win says she still talks about how close she came to $33 million.

Tonight the Powerball draw has ticked over to a $30 million jackpot, the second largest it has ever been after the $27 million prize up for grabs on Wednesday was not struck.

Alison Ashton, who owns One Step Ahead in Ponsonby, sold a ticket in September 2013 that netted the anonymous buyer $33 million.

The jackpot, which went to a second division winner after no one won first division, was the biggest individual Powerball prize in the game's history.

Ashton and her husband Gary had the winning ticket framed for them by Lotto, but they still don't know who bought it.

"We have the original lotto ticket just to remind us how close we came to $33 million.

"My lovely husband sold the ticket to someone so he touched it."

The Ashtons still own One Step Ahead on Ponsonby Rd, but sold the Lotto part of their business two years ago.

Ashton said she still thought of the win often.

"It was very cool - people still talk about it.

"I remember even walking around the Warehouse a couple of weeks later and someone came up and rubbed me and said 'I just want to get a rub of your good luck'."

People were very superstitious about Lotto tickets, with one person making a trip all the way from Tauranga just to buy a ticket from Ashton's shop after the Powerball win.

The West Auckland winner of the 2013 draw never made their identity known, but Ashton said she's always hoped it had been one of her regulars.

"You get to know your customers so we were really hopeful it went to one of those well deserving people."

She said she hoped whoever had won had "done good things" with the money, like pay of their mortgage or go on a big trip.

One Step Ahead had never sold another ticket netting such a big win in the 15 years they sold Lotto tickets, with Ashton joking she hoped tonight's draw didn't knock them off the top perch.

She and Gary bought a Lotto ticket every week - "you've got to be in to win"- so there was a chance the couple could knock themselves off the top perch with a win of their own.

- NZ Herald

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