herald

Friday 20 September 2019

What a result - man celebrates Ireland win by scooping €1.5m

James Collins celebrates goal
James Collins celebrates goal

A Dublin punter has thanked Mick McCarthy and the Boys in Green for helping him net €1.5m in a flutter following the first half of Ireland's friendly against Bulgaria.

The Paddy Power customer won the eye-watering sum on a €4 stake, landing €1,555,326.42 on the bookmaker's Lucky Halloween slots game.

The individual, a married dad-of-two, explained how he returned home from his shift and settled down to watch the soccer on Tuesday night.

"The Ireland v Bulgaria football game was on and the first half was dire," he said.

Whistle

"I was watching it on my phone, so I went on to Paddy Power Games and thought I'd give it a go."

But at 9.22pm, everything changed. And by the final whistle, he was a millionaire.

Not only had he won €1.5m, but two minutes later Kevin Long delivered a header to break the impasse and put Ireland 2-1 ahead, followed swiftly by James Collins who made it 3-1 on his debut.

The lucky punter, who did not want to be named, took a screen shot on his mobile after he won and sent it to his brother - as he feared he had misread the decimal point.

"I know it's probably the standard response, but I very literally couldn't believe my eyes. I sent a screenshot to my brother and asked, 'is it €1.5 million or €1.5 thousand?'"

Celebrations

"He replied, that's '1.5 million bro'," he said.

But while celebrations are certainly in order for the lucky Dub, the public is being urged to be very careful when it comes to online gambling.

Addiction counsellor Austin Prior told the Herald that compulsive betting is a growing concern in Ireland.

"People can do immense damage when it comes to gambling, especially since it's become so accessible," he said.

"Young men in particular are at a big risk to the sheer ease of placing a bet on their phones.

"When you cross the line into addiction, you see people losing everything."

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