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How 4,082 Lotto Players Matched Five Numbers in One Draw

How 4,082 Lotto Players Matched Five Numbers in One Draw

The Lotto results on Wednesday 24th March caused a stir amongst players, with a freak set of numbers leading to many more ticket holders matching five main balls than is usual. This led to those winners claiming £15 each when those who matched four numbers received £51 and the Match 3 tier award was £25, a situation possibly caused by ticket holders selecting their Lotto lines using a distinct pattern.  

The Lotto numbers were 7, 14, 21, 35, 41 and 42, five of which are multiples of seven, a number traditionally thought to be lucky. In the previous three draws there had been 55, 36 and 61 ticket holders matching five main balls, but there were a remarkable 4,082 winners in that tier on Wednesday night.

It is likely that these players had put their faith in the good fortune that seven is supposed to bring and suggestions have been made that, had the 41 in the winning line been 28 instead, there might have been an unprecedented 4,082 jackpot winners, each receiving around £6,000 of the £24.8 million prize fund. See the Lotto Results section for a prize breakdown from the draw.

The only fixed Lotto prizes are the free Lucky Dip ticket for matching two main numbers and the Match 3 award of £25. Once the prizes for matching three main numbers are paid, each higher prize tier is allocated a fixed percentage of the remaining pool to be shared amongst the winners at that level. When there are fewer winners at a certain level, the share each player receives is higher and vice versa.

Situations of the like that happened on Wednesday night are extremely rare, but it does highlight how your prize can be affected if you choose your numbers based on recognisable sequences. On 14th January 1995, the Lotto jackpot was split 133 ways after the numbers drawn all appeared in the central columns of the paper playslip. Each winner received a £122,510 share of the £16.2 million top prize.

For Saturday’s £28.2 million draw, you might want to consider using the Lotto Number Generator to ensure a random selection of digits on your tickets. You can buy Lotto tickets online and from authorised retailers across the UK until 7:30pm on Saturday. Good luck!

Published: Thursday 24th March 2016

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