While last Wednesday’s (01 March) Lotto draw grabbed all of the headlines as a winning ticket from Dublin scooped the whopping €12.8 million jackpot, a married couple fromLaois remained blissfully unaware that they had won the Match 5 + Bonus prize of €179,034.
‘We had no idea we had won anything,’ gasped the winning wife.
The married couple who wish to keep their win private, purchased their winning Quick Pick ticket at the Supervalu shop on Abbeyleix Road, near O'Moore Park GAA grounds Portlaoise.
The couple admitted that they longingly discussed the €12.8 million Lotto jackpot winners, oblivious to the fact that they were sitting on a fortune themselves.
"On Thursday morning, we heard that there had been a huge Lotto jackpot winner in Dublin and it never dawned on us to check our own ticket," said the winning husband.
"I was in the shop on Friday evening picking up some groceries and I had my Lotto ticket checked at the till. The shop assistant handed me back a slip which instructed me to contact the National Lottery. My wife and I agonizingly spent the whole weekend inspecting our numbers to try to figure out how much we had won," he laughed.
Previously, the Lotto Match 5 + Bonus prize was guaranteed at €25,000. Following game changes, the prize fund is now carried forward in each draw, if there are no winners, meaning the possibility of bigger prizes.
"This win comes at just the perfect time for us. We were facing astronomical fees to put all of our kids through college for the next few years. We can now take care of them without having to worry about saving and paying all of their bills.
"First though, my wife and I will treat ourselves to a nice sun holiday in the next few weeks to celebrate properly,’" promised the lucky father.
Playing National Lottery funds good causes across Ireland. In 2016 alone, the National Lottery raised over €200 million good causes.
This level of funding has made a significant difference to communities, projects and individuals in the areas of Youth, Sports, Recreation, Amenities, Health, Welfare, Arts, Culture, National Heritage and the Irish Language.