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Euro-Millions jackpot hits €132m

Players have only one chance in 116.5m of winning - but would take home the equivalent of three tonnes of gold

AFTER 10 successive rollovers without a winner, tonight's Euro-Millions lottery jackpot has hit €132million ... the equivalent of three tonnes of gold.

More than 40 million players are expected to join in tonight's game hoping to be the 93rd person to win or share a jackpot of more than €100m since Euro-Millions started in 2004.

It is the fourth time this year that the jackpot has been more than €100m: with a €158m win being shared by a Belgian and a Briton on June 8, a record €190m won by a British couple on August 10 and the €100m Super Jackpot on September 28 by a Spanish player.

The record French win was by a family in Calvados on September 13, 2011, who won €162m, just weeks after a Scots couple won €185m.

Due to exchange rate changes, this Scots couple are still the record jackpot winners in the UK, their total of £161m pipping the £148m won by the August winners.

Each player's €2 entry has one chance in 116,531,800 to pick the seven numbers needed to win.

But the real winner is the taxman: in France organisers Française des Jeux is owned 72% by the state and pays €3bn a year in tax and for sports development. News magazine Challenges worked out the figures for a player who won a €90m jackpot: if they invested the total in good funds that provided a 5% annual return they would get €4.5m in interest each year... but would pay €3.38m in tax.

Euro-Millions is most popular in the UK, which has 23% of players, then France with nearly 22%. Nearly one in five of French players are regulars, who will spend an average of €5 each time.

* Last weekend the Euro-Millions French website was hijacked and replaced with a Koran message in Arabic and French that condemned gambling.

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