|Posted: March 5, 2007, 3:32 pm - IP Logged|
I have developed what I think is the best way to check a stack of Mega Millions lottery tickets to pick out the winners.
With the big drawing coming up tomorrow night, a lot of you will undoubtedly be buying a bunch of tickets, so I thought it would be a good time to pass this tip on.
This technique will work well for any 5+1 game. I have been using it for years, so I'm confident that's it's not only fool-proof as you can get, but can help avoid missing winning tickets.
OK, so here it is:
You will be sorting your stack of tickets into the "winners pile" and the "losers pile". The "winners" will go to the store with you, to redeem for cash, and the "losers" will go wherever you put losing tickets.
- First, scan every ticket for the Bonus number (the Mega Ball). Because the Mega Ball is listed on the right side of the ticket. it is incredibly easy and fast to scan down each ticket looking for the bonus number. Every ticket that has a matching bonus number instantly goes into the "winners pile".
Set aside the winners pile — you're finished with those tickets. For each of the following steps you will be using all the remaining tickets that are not yet in the winners pile.
- Memorize the first 3 winning numbers drawn, using the sorted order that is shown at http://www.usamega.com/ (not the order they were drawn). For example, in the Friday drawing, the numbers were 14, 21, 33.
- Go through each ticket you have left and look at only the first 3 numbers of each line to see if any of the 3 numbers you've memorized matches with any of the first 3 numbers. Don't worry about the other two numbers on the right or the Mega Ball. Just look at the first three numbers and compare with the first three numbers of the results. Circle any of the numbers you matched — again, only ones that match in the first three. Don't circle any of the last two numbers or Mega Ball.
- After you've done this for all the tickets, only the lines with at least one number circled have the potential to be a winner. Go back to each line that has at least one number circled and check to see if either of the 2 remaining results numbers are included on that line.
For example, in the Friday drawing the last 2 numbers were 35 and 51. Go back to any line with any numbers circled and see if 35 and/or 51 were on that same line. Circle them if they are.
- When you're finished, out of all those tickets you've put the circles on, pick out all tickets in which at least 3 numbers are circled on one line, and put it into the winners pile. The reasoning is that if a line does not match the Mega Ball, it must match at least 3 numbers in order to be a winner.
When you're finished you can go through your winners pile and look at them more closely — and savor the wins!
Does this sound complicated? Well, in practice it is not, and in fact makes checking tickets much quicker, and much more accurate.
The technique works because if a ticket that does not match the Mega Ball then it must be at least a 3+0 match in order to win anything. And in order to be a 3+0 match, the first three numbers on the ticket must have at least one of the first three numbers drawn.
It also works well because it focuses on just looking for three numbers to match, rather than five. Unless you're a brainiac, the human mind works much better with a set of three than it does with five. When checking a large stack of tickets, the mind/eyes can get fooled by scanning for a larger set of numbers.
What do you think?
Do YOU have a good way to check winning tickets? What about for other games?
Good luck to everyone playing tomorrow night!