Mega Millions organisers revise jackpot estimate

Friday March 25th 2011

Officials organising tonight's Mega Millions lottery draw have increased their jackpot estimate. Following a number of rollovers, the top prize has continued to grow, and after no one managed to match all six numbers in Tuesday’s game, the jackpot increased to $304million.

Officials have now announced that lottery ticket sales have been so brisk, the first tier prize is more likely to be closer to $312million.

The last time the jackpot was claimed was on February 1 when two players split a $91million jackpot. As always, the main prize was reset to $12million, but a total of 14 rollovers have occurred since then.

Gary Grief, executive director of the Texas Lottery Commission and Mega Millions lottery group director, said: "We're seeing excitement from coast to coast in the 43 jurisdictions in which Mega Millions is played. Along with that excitement, we encourage players to have fun and play responsibly."

If one player were to win big tonight, they would have to choose between receiving their prize in 26 annual payments of around $12million, or take a one-off, lump sum cash payment of $198million before state and federal taxes.

The US’s Powerball jackpot is also creeping up, and currently stands at $125million. The next draw will be held tomorrow (Saturday) evening.

Written by Samantha Jones

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