A request for a so-called “must-win” draw in the National Lottery of Ireland that has followed an unprecedented series of draws with no jackpot win was put on hold.
According to reports, in December 2021, the operator of the country’s National Lottery, Premier Lotteries Ireland, sought from the Office of the Lottery Regulator to impose the aforementioned measure after a streak of more than 50 lottery draws without a jackpot win. The unprecedented rollover streak without a jackpot winner has continued into 2022, with the jackpot now having not been won on a total of 62 consecutive draws.
The company suggested that the jackpot should be split between players who have guessed 5 numbers and the bonus number in cases when no one guessed all 6 numbers in the draw for the €19-million jackpot. Carol Boate, a representative of Ireland’s National Lotto regulator, explained in a statement for The Irish Times that on December 7th, 2021, the National Lottery formally asked for a change to be brought to the Lotto game rules as a result of the situation.
Ms Boate, however, revealed that she had rejected the operator’s initial request because she needed more information on the matter before allowing such a move. She further noted that any changes that are brought to the status quo should be in the interest of players and should make sure that the National Lottery operations are run in line with the country’s gambling legislation.
Irish National Lottery Keeps Jackpot Untouched Following 62 Consecutive Unsuccessful Draws
The Irish National Lottery jackpot has not been won since June 9th, 2021. So far, this means a total of 62 rollovers without a win, which beats the previous record of 22 consecutive draws without a player hitting the jackpot. Still, Ms Boate said that such a situation was not something new to the history of lotteries in Ireland.
The extremely long streak of unsuccessful draws, however, raised serious concerns that the local residents may lose their faith in the lottery unless its jackpot is hit soon. It was Bernard Dunkan, a member of the Fine Gael, who shared these concerns and questioned whether Irish people would continue to purchase National Lottery tickets in case the jackpot remains out of reach for so long. Mr Dunkan also called on the competent authorities to be proactive in restoring public confidence in the operator of the National Lottery.
Another Fianna Fáil politician, Micheál Martin, who has served as Taoiseach since June 2020, has noted that the proposed lottery review has already found support.
Currently, the jackpot of the National Lottery is €19 million.
The number of balls used in the draws of the Irish National Lottery was increased from the original 36 in 1988 to a total of 47 that are currently in play. The move resulted in a reduction of the winning combination chances to 1:10,737,573.