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Saturday 10 December 2016

Lotto luck as winner finally gets €8m cheque

Shop owner Matt Lyons
Shop owner Matt Lyons

The winner of an €8.2m lottery fortune finally picked up the winning cheque last night after a two-month legal stand-off.

The National Lottery said a "delighted Lotto player from the north west collected the 5 March Lotto jackpot of €8,244,502 at Lottery Headquarters".

The winning ticket was bought in Matt Lyons XL shop on Stephen Street in Sligo.

Yesterday was the 90-day deadline for a claim to be made.

The man who sold the winning ticket, a €20 normal play ticket, said he was "absolutely delighted" the dispute had been resolved.

"Sure there's no better way to start a sunny Bank Holiday weekend than with €8m in your back pocket," said Mr Lyons.

"I'm glad that someone has finally received the money and can go on and enjoy it. We are thrilled to bits for whoever it is."

Publicity

It was the second time Mr Lyons has sold a jackpot ticket. In 2009 he sold a winning €4m lotto ticket.

Last night there were queues outside his shop from punters hoping lady luck will strike a third time.

"It has been good for business," said Mr Lyons.

"When we sold the ticket seven years ago there was great publicity for a week or two but this time it has been going on for months.

"I suppose people think we're a lucky shop and we could have another winner. I certainly hope we do."

The winner's identity has not been revealed but a solicitor acting on behalf of a person who claimed to have won the cash previously explained that there had been a delay.

The problem was believed to revolve around the operator's rules on ticket validation.

The winning ticket must be intact and can't be "mutilated, altered, illegible, incomplete or tampered with in any manner," according to the Lotto.

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