Canny Coaster scoops pool

MARIKA HILL
Last updated 08:51 27/01/2013

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A lucky and clever West Coast punter won a $15.77 million Lotto prize with some cunning game-playing last night.

The Lotto first-division prize was split between 13 winners - 10 of whom lived on the West Coast, according to Lotto's data.

But it's unlikely to be a case of 10 people all picking the same numbers in a massive coincidence.

A Lotto spokeswoman said it's more likely a single person on the West Coast had picked his or her Powerball numbers and then repeated the purchase nine times to cover all the Powerball options, balls 1 to 10.

So the winner struck the first division 10 times and the Powerball once, netting $769,000 for the 10 first-division tickets and another $15m for Powerball.

A Nelson player used the same ploy last year to also win the Powerball and 10 first division prizes, the spokeswoman said.

While the lucky West Coaster made sure of winning Powerball, he or she created a whole lot of bad luck for the other three first-division winners.

If the 10-ticket buyer had purchased just one, four people would have shared $250,000. Instead the other three take home just $76,923. The three other first-division winners were from Auckland, Lower Hutt and Nelson.

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- Fairfax Media

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