$14.4m winning ticket cashed in

The man who won the $14.4 million Lotto Powerball prize has claimed his windfall in Auckland last night.

The Christchurch man, who wanted to remain anonymous, said his girlfriend phoned him yesterday morning "because she had a feeling" about his Lotto ticket.

When he went to check his ticket, he had "no idea what prize we might be in for".

His immediate reaction was "happiness".

"Just knowing that I'll be able to help out my kids and my family and that it can help generations to come if managed right," he said.

"This win will make life more comfortable for a lot of people."

His excitement was shared by the Lotto shop assistants.

"There was a young guy there and he hadn't been working in the shop very long and it blew him away. He was as excited as I was," the man said.

He said his children were "over the moon".

"Other people's reactions have been emotional," he said.

"There have been a few tears and even some screaming.

"I want to help all my kids buy houses wherever they want, and then just help other family too."

The winning ticket was bought from Countdown in Ashburton.

Store manager Graeme Moody said he was phoned yesterday by territory representative Adrienne Todd, who said the winner had checked his ticket in Christchurch.

The win, announced on Saturday night, comprised $13,395,864 from Powerball first division and $1 million from Lotto first division.