Germany prints extra tickets for record jackpot
5th December 2007, Punters were hoping to crack the 43-million-euro (63-million-dollar) pot in Wednesday evening's draw of the Lotto game, in which players have to guess six correct numbers from a field of 49.
5th December 2007
Punters were hoping to crack the 43-million-euro (63-million-dollar) pot in Wednesday evening's draw of the Lotto game, in which players have to guess six correct numbers from a field of 49.
If a Lotto winner guesses an additional "superbowl" number from a field of 10, they claim the jackpot.
Millions of German non-gamblers have joined in the twice-weekly game, and queues have built up at Lotto counters in areas bordering Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria and France as word of Germany's richest pot ever spreads.
The national Lotto consortium estimated 100 million euros would be bet on the Wednesday draw.
Lower Saxony's state lottery commission, Totto-Lotto, which is part of the national Lotto consortium, said it had ordered 5 million extra paper tickets and distributed 3 million to counters in the past few days.
"We won't be running out," said spokesman Herbert John in Hanover, explaining that in an average week just 250,000 tickets were distributed to the retailers, who are mostly tobacconists or newspaper vendors.
Germans can also place entries via the internet.
At a tobacco shop in Schwedt, near the Polish border, the manager said "crowds" of Poles were waiting to play, with a queue stretching 25 metres out the shop door.
Polish television was broadcasting news clips from a Lotto vendor in Frankfurt an der Oder on the border.
On the Danish border, Michael Rohloff at Wolsdorff Tobacco, a shop in the city of Flensburg, said he was standing by to be swamped by Danes on Wednesday.
"A lot of them are playing for the first time, so I need to help them a bit with the language when they fill out the ticket," he said.
Television personality Heike Maurer who reads out the winning numbers at every televised draw meanwhile said she was so nervous she could not make up her mind what to wear Wednesday night.
"At such a crowning moment, maybe it should be evening dress," she said. Maurer added she deliberately forgot her own guesses, out of fear they would cause a slip of the tongue when announcing the winning numbers.
Organizers are set to disclose Thursday morning if any ticket matches all the numbers. Otherwise the jackpot rolls over till the next draw on Saturday.
If no one wins the jackpot beforehand, it will be shared by the six-number winners on December 12.
Subject: German news, lottery