Tue, Sep 17, 7:53am by Staff Writer
Powerball has rocketed to a historic $150 million for next Thursday’s draw – a division one prize that has never been seen before in Australian lottery history, Yahoo News reports.
The ground-breaking jackpot comes after no players held a Division One winning entry in Thursday’s Powerball draw, prompting the game to roll higher for the eighth consecutive week.
The Lott spokesperson Bronwyn Spencer said 2019 continued to be a record-breaking year for Australian lotteries with Powerball venturing into unexplored territory once again.
“Never before has there been such a strong sequence of high Powerball jackpots like the one we’ve witnessed during the past 12 months,” she said.
But many Australians are now asking if this spate of record-breaking jackpots is merely a coincidence.
In August 2018 the Powerball jackpot hit nine figures for the first time ever, standing at an eye-watering $100 million.
Months later in January a record $100m jackpot was offered with one winner collecting a total of $107m.
Then in July, that was pipped by a $110 million jackpot that was eventually split between three winners.
Two months later the current jackpot sits at $150 million – again another record.
The news came as a shock to punters, with about one third of Australian adults buying a ticket for the draw yet to no avail when it came to the Division One prize.
Hundreds took to social media to express their disbelief.
“How can Powerball not go off? Next week 150 million… I reckon it’s a scam…” one person suggested.
— The Today Show (@TheTodayShow) September 12, 2019
And while The Lott’s Bronwyn Spencer remarked “who would have known” such a gargantuan jackpot would follow just months after July’s $110 million, those in charge of the Powerball knew the likelihood of a draw jackpotting over and over had increased since April last year.
It was then the Powerball format was changed.
Instead of having to match six numbers from 40 from the main barrel, players must now match seven numbers from 35.
This has made it almost twice as hard to scoop the Division One prize, with the odds of one game winning it rocketing to 134,490,400 to 1.
The chance of winning it previously was 76,767,600 to 1.
At the time the move was made, The Lott told punters the move would create more winners overall.
“The odds of winning any prize have improved from 1 in 78 to 1 in 44, so you can look forward to more winners in every draw,” The Lott said last year.
Yet that was of course thanks to the addition of a Division Nine with the extra ball drawn.
The record for Australia’s biggest individual lottery win was set in January this year, when a Sydney woman took more $107.575,649.08.
At the time, the healthcare worker, who wished to remain anonymous, shocked many by insisting she would keep working despite her bulging bank account.
She said she planned to share her winnings with her family, give “a whole slab of money” to her favourite charity, and perhaps even “buy a caravan and travel around.”
“I’m so passionate about my job. It will drive me to do more health work for causes important to me,” she told The Lott at the time.
“I’m not quite sure what to do but of course I will be helping my family.”
Late last month, a Sydney father discovered he was more than $96 million richer after winning the country’s second-biggest individual lottery prize.
The unnamed man, from Chatswood in Sydney’s Lower North Shore, won the Lucky Lotteries Mega Jackpot draw 1447, which was drawn on August 28.
The office worker received the call from lottery officials while he was in the office and was initially stunned by the news.
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