Spain’s annual Christmas lottery scattered prize money all over the country on Monday 22 December, with 40 million euros coming to Malaga province.
This year’s Christmas lottery had the country on edge for most of Monday morning as the children sung out hundreds of winning numbers and their corresponding prize money. The tension went on longer than usual this year, though, as the ball for the first prize, known as El Gordo, didn’t come out of the drum until minutes before the end of the draw.
The winning number, 13437, had been sold by a lottery administration office in the village of El Bosque in the province of Cadiz, as well as in Madrid, among other areas. Around a hundred of the tickets, known as ‘décimos’, had been distributed by two Ronda-based sellers, Salvador Melgar and Miguel Pineda. They had swapped some tickets with their colleague in El Borge, to sell to their regular customers in Ronda. These tickets are now worth some 40 million euros, the largest share of El Gordo ever to reach the province of Malaga.
There were emotional scenes in Arriate, where a group of nine friends who have breakfast in the same bar every day had decided to buy a ticket between them. They are now each around 35,000 euros richer.
A tearful Josefa Cruz explained exactly what the prize money meant to her. “My husband and I are unemployed with no financial benefits,” she said, adding that this year the Three Kings would be bringing lots of presents for her children.
Meanwhile 25-year-old Carmen Fernández learned that the ticket she had bought with her sister-in-law had won the first prize while she was on her way to work at a Burger King restaurant in Malaga. “My legs are trembling,” she said as she celebrated with colleagues.
In Alhaurín de la Torre, 21-year-old Saray said she didn’t buy her second-prize-winning ticket until Sunday night and chose the number, 92845, because it was closest to one she had dreamed of.
Courtesy: Sur in Emglish
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