An outrageous $50 million is up for grabs this Saturday after Wednesday night's $42m Lotto Powerball prize rolled over - and some are questioning why it can't be shared.

Six lucky players split $1m for First Division - but no one clinched the $42m Powerball prize which has surged to $50m this weekend. This Saturday's draw is the biggest in Lotto's history in New Zealand.

The winning First Division tickets were sold at: Four Square Coopers Beach, Northland; Countdown Mt Eden, Auckland; Trafalgar Lotto, Whanganui; online in Wellington; Nelson City New World and New World Centre City, Dunedin.

The winning numbers were: 30, 8, 2, 33, 21, 3, the bonus ball was 13 and the Powerball was 6.

Advertisement
Tonight's full Lotto results.
Tonight's full Lotto results.

In the minutes after the numbers were drawn, visitors to Lotto's website spiked, with the site reporting "more visitors than normal" and adding "sorry if you have trouble accessing some pages".

Wednesday's jackpot was just $2 million shy of New Zealand's biggest ever win, with $44m won by a young Hibiscus Coast couple in November 2016.

If a single winner takes the jackpot on Saturday, it will be easily the biggest ever Lotto win in New Zealand.

On the NZ Herald Facebook page overnight, many followers questioned why the $50 million couldn't be split this weekend.

"Imagine the greatness this money could achieve if it went to 50 families," one follower said.

Another said: "I hope it doesn't go to first division or second and trickles down to third division so a heap of people win! Imagine that for so many families!!!"

One joked: "Bloody hell the whole (of) NZ is going broke before this Saturday."

Powerball fever struck the nation ahead of last night's mammoth draw.

Advertisement

Punters flocked to Lotto retailers in droves ahead of the draw, hoping to be the country's latest multi-millionaire.

Hopeful winners queued up for last-minute tickets at Amigos Dairy, Stationary & Lotto in Auckland. Photo / Michael Craig
Hopeful winners queued up for last-minute tickets at Amigos Dairy, Stationary & Lotto in Auckland. Photo / Michael Craig

And the slim odds of winning – one in 38 million – didn't put hopeful players off either, as queues snaked in and out of shops in the hours before the draw.

With millions of Kiwis flocking to buy tickets ahead of the draw, you might have assumed your chances of hitting the jackpot became slimmer with every ticket sale.

A full breakdown of the Powerball results. Photo / Lotto
A full breakdown of the Powerball results. Photo / Lotto

But, as University of Otago statistician Dr Matthew Parry told the Herald, you'd be wrong.

"The probability of winning doesn't change, that's always fixed no matter how many people are playing in the lottery," he said.

"It just depends on the numbers that come out [but the] more people play, more people are likely to win so, therefore, your payout slightly gets smaller."

Advertisement

READ MORE:
Lotto's $42m Powerball jackpot: Here's the secret book they hand winners with financial advice
Auckland police's top tips for increasing your odds of winning Lotto tonight
Lotto Powerball $42m: Thousands are buying tickets but do your odds change?
Lotto Powerball: $19m winner buys dream home but still driving same $2000 car

Two lucky Powerball winners won $19.1m each in October last year, sharing the same ticket numbers for a $38m draw.

Four months on, one of the pair has just bought their dream house, even if she still drives the same $2000 car from before her days as a multi-millionaire.

"We've always dreamt of owning our own home and now it's a reality – though it's still quite hard to believe."

The winning MyLotto numbers from October's $38m draw. Photo / Supplied
The winning MyLotto numbers from October's $38m draw. Photo / Supplied

Both winners of the $38m draw urged the future Powerball winner to keep things simple.

"My top piece of advice is to take your time, make sure you have a solid plan in place, and you have a financial adviser that you're comfortable with," one said.

Advertisement

But Saturday's winner will likely have enough to shell out on a set of bagpipes, a gastric bypass, Prada shoes, or whatever takes their fancy, in the vein of past Lotto winners.

According the Winners' Book, most Powerball winners splashed on a new house, paid off mortgages, helped family members, travelled overseas and donated to charity.

For others, professional tattoos, face-lifts, and even a buffalo-hunting trip fit the bill.

Your odds of winning Lotto - one in 38 million - don't change even with thousands more buying tickets. Photo / Michael Bradley
Your odds of winning Lotto - one in 38 million - don't change even with thousands more buying tickets. Photo / Michael Bradley

But Sunday is not the day to start spending newfound millions, Lotto winners are warned.

Craig Offwood from ANZ's Private Bank team told The Herald that the moments after striking gold were "definitely not" the time to make any rash decisions.

"From our experience, it's clear what winners do with their prize has a huge impact on the rest of their lives."

Advertisement

"Over the years, we have seen some great success stories. Equally, there have been some cases where they have squandered their jackpot.

"After failing to heed advice, they have gone on a spending spree with the unfortunate belief the winnings would last forever.

"The last thing you want is to find yourself with no money in 10 years' time."

Saturday's winner can expect to visit a special room at Lotto's head office in Auckland, complete with chocolate, champagne and even tissues.

What awaited the winners of $44 million in 2016 at Lotto's winners' room. Photo / Michael Bradley
What awaited the winners of $44 million in 2016 at Lotto's winners' room. Photo / Michael Bradley

They'll also receive a book full of tips of how to handle the life-changing win.

"The decision about what you do with your winnings is entirely yours - you will shape your future," the 60-page book states.

Advertisement

"We hope this booklet helps you to understand the steps ahead of you, make your goals easier to reach and, of course, enjoy your winnings!

"We wish you all the best for the future, and hope you'll look back on the day you found out you were a winner as one of the happiest days of your life."