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Lotto Rolldown: Why Prizes Were Larger Than Normal

Lotto Rolldown: Why Prizes Were Larger Than Normal
Updated: Friday 15th November 2019

More than 92,000 Lotto players received a very welcome bonus on Wednesday night as they won bigger prizes than the regular fixed amounts. But why did this happen and will it happen again? Read on to find out all about ‘Lotto rolldowns’.

What Is A Lotto Rolldown?

A rolldown is activated when the Lotto jackpot must be won but there are no tickets which match all six main numbers. The jackpot money is therefore split between all the participants in the Match 3, Match 4, Match 5 and Match 5 + Bonus categories.

The biggest share of the jackpot (74 percent) is given to players matching three main numbers as there are usually so many more winners in this category than in the other cash prize tiers. However, it has been calculated so that everyone will receive a significantly increased payout.

How Much Bigger Than Normal Were Prizes?

In Wednesday’s draw, players in the Match 3 prize tier received £138 each instead of the regular fixed amount of £30. As there were 88,347 winners in this tier, it meant that over £12 million went into this category in total.

All 3,667 players who picked four correct numbers had their standard £140 reward boosted to £724, pushing the total payout in this tier to more than £2.7 million. The 43 ticket holders matching five numbers won £19,820 each rather than £1,750, while the single player in the Match 5 + Bonus tier received an extra £388,525 on top of their fixed £1 million prize.

The prize amounts will vary from draw to draw when there is a rolldown, depending on the total number of tickets sold and the number of winners in each category. Go to the page on ‘Must Be Won’ draws to see the percentage allocated to every tier.

Are Rolldowns New?

The draw on Wednesday was the first time that a rolldown has come into effect, following a series of rule changes in November. Previously, all of the jackpot money would just go to the players in the next highest tier in which there were winners if nobody matched all six main numbers in a Must Be Won draw.

There has only been one other Must Be Won draw since the changes came in, but two ticket holders matched all the main numbers to share the £15 million jackpot on 22nd December, so a rolldown was not required.

When Will This Happen Again?

A Must Be Won draw will be held after there have been five consecutive rollovers. It is not possible to know when this will happen again, but this rule was introduced to ensure that the jackpot would be won more regularly than had happened previously. Must Be Won draws can occasionally be scheduled to mark special events, such as the one on 22nd December to celebrate Christmas.

They represent excellent opportunities for players, as the cost of a ticket remains the same and so do the odds of winning; there is just a good chance that you will end up with a much larger prize if you do win. The jackpot for the next draw will be £3.8 million, and you can take part online or by going to an authorised retailer.

Published: Thursday 31st January 2019

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