The Gisborne residents, who have opted to remain anonymous, told lottery officials that they knew almost straight away that they had won the jackpot, but claim they needed time to process the news before contacting lottery officials. In a press release, the husband of the pair explained: "We wanted to have a good think about what we'd do with the winnings before we did anything - really clear our heads. It's quite bizarre seeing all the excitement around town as people looked for the winning ticket, knowing that we had the ticket tucked away safely at home."
Following the couple’s decision to keep their exciting news quiet, they needed somewhere safe to store the winning ticket. Removing it from the glove compartment of his car for fear it might be stolen, the husband quickly stashed the lucky playslip in what he believed to be a secure location: "I ended up putting it in a folder where we keep all our bills. We figured that even if the house got robbed no one is ever going to steal that."
In order to avoid arousing suspicion, the pair continued working, refused to inform family members and held back on any immediate spending. "We haven't actually bought anything yet,” said the husband. Even after collecting their winnings, the couple explained how they weren’t going to let themselves get carried away: “We're not flashy people, so we might just head out for a nice lunch in Auckland,” the husband added.
However, the cashed-up couple, who purchased their ticket from Grant Bros. in Gisborne, do have some plans for the money: "Helping people, that's what the reward will be for us," smiled the husband, before adding: "We want to help our family and the community. We know that there are so many people out there that could do with a bit of help, and we're looking forward to being able to do our bit for them in the future."
New Zealand Lotto Powerball draws take place every Wednesday and Saturday. If you’d like to take part in the next draw, when the jackpot will be worth an estimated $7 million, you can play online or via any authorised New Zealand Lotto Powerball retailer. Good luck!