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Odds of Winning the Lottery?

In October 2015 the UK Lottery introduced huge changes to the lottery draw by adding 10 new number to the draw. Previously players selected from a set of numbers between 1 and 49, but now the selection goes up to 59.

There has been lots of debate about whether anyone is better off following these changes, as the chances of winning any lotto prize has improved from 1 in 54 to 1 in 9.3. That’s good right? You have much more chances of winning the lottery? Well, we all know what anyone who plays the lottery is only after one thing, we want to win the lottery jackpot!

What are the chances of winning the lottery in 2016?

The Lottery Jackpot

To win the lottery jackpot you must correctly match 6 numbers between 1 and 59. Therefore there are 59!/(6!*(59-6)!) different combinations of lottery numbers. This gives you a chance of 1 in 45,057,474.

5 Numbers + Bonus Ball

Technically you are still matching 6 numbers between 1 and 59 but you can now do this in more ways. We can use the same calculation as we did with the lottery jackpot, but factor in the extra combinations. This gives us a chance 1 in 7,509,579.

5 Numbers

Moving to 5 numbers, your chances increase significantly! Matching 5 numbers out of a pool of 6 numbers between 1 and 59 gives you a chance of 1 in 144,415.

4 Numbers

With an average prize of £100 (if you're lucky) matching 4 lottery numbers is nothing to get too excited about. But if you are chancing that 4 ball win, your chances of winning a lottery prize is 1 in 2179.8. Unfortunately this means your chances of matching 4 balls is still quite unlikely!

3 Numbers

Given the above, matching 3 numbers should be easy right? Well that depends on how you define the word easy. Matching 3 numbers, giving you a prize of £25 is a chance of 1 in 96.

2 Numbers

Matching two numbers will win a prize. Unfortunately that prise is another chance at winning given the above odds. Is that a win even? Anyway, the chances of matching 2 lottery numbers out of a this pool is 1 in 10 (well, a few fractions more) but personally I've still never actually suceeded in winning a free draw! Or maybe I just haven't noticed!

Do you want to play the lottery for free? OK, you can't win anything but try out our lottery results checker to search all lottery numbers that have ever been drawn. See if you can match 6 random numbers from a past lottery draw!

Good luck!


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What are the odds of winning the lottery in 2016?