‘Football widow’ wins £1m with lottery ticket bought out of boredom

Sammantha Young entered the EuroMillions draw while her husband watched yet another match during the Euros.
Sammantha Young entered the EuroMillions draw while her husband watched yet another match during the Euros.

A “football widow” who bought a National Lottery ticket to alleviate the boredom during the European Championship is celebrating after scooping £1 million.

Sammantha Young decided to buy the ticket while her husband Paul was watching the latest of many Euro 2020 matches on July 2.

The 33-year-old won her prize in the EuroMillions UK Millionaire Maker draw after also winning £20 on the Instant Win game on the National Lottery app that night.

Mrs Young, of Basingstoke, Hampshire, said: “Like the rest of the country, I’ve been so proud to support the England team and cheered them all the way to the final.

“However my husband has watched every group game and it has been a little trying at times, which is why I brightened my Friday evening with a glass of Prosecco and a National Lottery Instant Win game.

“I won £20, which I then used to buy a couple of Lucky Dip tickets for that night’s EuroMillions draw.

“Just before I went to bed, I logged back in and saw that there was no jackpot winner so I thought that was it, little did I know I’d wake up a millionaire.”

Mrs Young said that when she checked her emails the following morning she thought she had won only £1,000.

She said: “I’m a little embarrassed to admit that although I’m a chartered accountant, working with numbers every day, it was Paul who looked at the message more closely and pointed out that what I thought was £1,000 was one thousand times more and was actually £1 million.

“Neither of us were willing to dare believe that the win was real. We were convinced it was fake and that somehow I had been scammed.”

Mrs Young, a mother of two, said that the money would give the family security but also pay for luxuries such as a dream holiday to Bora Bora in French Polynesia and a Range Rover Sport car.

Football widow Sammantha Young with husband Paul (James Robinson/Camelot/PA) (James Robinson/James Robinson)

She said: “We are very lucky, we already enjoy a good life on a day-to-day basis, however I am the main breadwinner, and due to my bipolar I have not been able to take out life insurance.

“It’s always worried me that if anything happens to me, Paul and our children’s future wouldn’t be so secure.

“Now, we can use our win to pay off the rest of the mortgage, plan some amazing getaways, splurge on a few treats and then put the rest away in long-term secure investments for the future.”

Mr Young, 39, said the win would help him watch more football with a Liverpool season ticket, while their teenage daughter’s wish list included a diamond ring and a Gucci bag and their son had only asked for a fidget spinner.

Mrs Young was one of 20 players to win £1 million in the EuroMillions UK Millionaire Maker draw on July 2.