Mega Millions Winner Just Barely Misses Out On Cash Prize World Record

Grace Carr | Reporter

The U.S. Mega Millions lottery winner claimed a whopping $1.537 billion jackpot Tuesday night, just missing the world record of nearly $1.6 billion for the largest lottery jackpot in history.

Tuesday’s night winner from South Carolina landed one of the largest prizes in history, but barely missed the record jackpot of $1.586 billion, a lottery official reported Wednesday morning, according to Reuters. That record was set by the Powerball drawing in January 2016.

Officials had expected the Mega Millions jackpot to surpass $1.6 billion. “There are few precedents for a jackpot this size. Typically, about 70 percent of sales occur on the drawing day, so forecasting precise numbers in advance can be difficult,” lottery spokeswoman Carole Bober Gentry said in a Wednesday statement, Reuters reported. (RELATED: California Lottery Officials’ Drunken Party Leads To Investigation)

The Mega Millions jackpot record was $656 million prior to Tuesday night’s drawing. “It’s a record for Mega Millions and it came very close to breaking the world record of all the jackpots,” Gentry said, according to ABC 7 Chicago.

The winner had an odds of 1 in 303 million, drawing numbers 5, 28, 62, 65, 70 and the Mega Ball 5 to beat the incredible odds.

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The winner can elect to accept the $1.537 billion to be paid in increments over 29 years or to accept an immediate payment of $877.8 million, according to Reuters.

Forty-four states, along with the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia, sell Mega Millions tickets. States that sell tickets receive a cut of the ticket sales that go toward funding public schools and other state needs.

Signs display the jackpots for Tuesday’s Mega Millions and Wednesday’s Powerball lottery drawings in New York City on Oct. 22, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

The Mega Millions jackpot failed to beat the 2016 Powerball record jackpot where three winners split the pot. However, Tuesday night’s winner won the greatest individual crash prize in history.

Wednesday’s Powerball jackpot is expected to net $620 million, which would be the fifth largest jackpot in U.S. history, according to Reuters.

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