A FEMALE punter had God on her side when she used feast days of the Virgin Mary to choose the lucky numbers, which won her £200,000 (€245,000) on the Lotto.
52-year-old mother, from the Midlands, who now lives in England, staked
a £2 (€2.45) bet at the bookies on last weekend's draw and only checked
her numbers after the new year.
The woman, who does not wish to be named, went to her local William Hill shop to collect her winnings.
She said: "I am going to give a cheque to the church and say a prayer to Our Lady."
woman said she was a practising Catholic and remembered a previous
windfall by another woman, who won €3m on the Irish Lottery using the
the feast days of Our Lady.
She has been using the same numbers for the past five or six years.
"I lost my office job last year and my faith keeps me going," added the woman. "My 90-year-old mother is from Galway and she always does three numbers every week with William Hill on the Irish Lottery. I've
got my rosary beads in my handbag and about four weeks ago, four of my
numbers came up but I hadn't done the numbers, so I decided I'd put five
on between Christmas and New Year. And as the draw was on the 29th, I put that number in as it is the Archangel Gabriel's feast day. I've
won the equivalent of more than 10 years' wages tax-free and it really
is quite surreal. I was walking round for three or four days unaware
that I had won."
The woman said she was now planning to holiday in Lourdes or in Rome as well as a new car.
Hill spokesman Rupert Adam said: "We know God moves in mysterious ways,
but this lady had all her new year prayers answered. We've all heard of
Lady Luck before, but Our Lady moves these winnings on to a different
spiritual plain. Gamblers with God on their side are clearly a force to
be reckoned with," he joked.