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Lotto's consecutive number draw not 'dodgy': All combinations equally (un)likely

2 December 2020 7:23 PM
Tags:
The Money Show
SA Lottery
Bruce Whitfield
National Lottery
Lotto PowerBall
lotto numbers
Johan Ferreira
#PhandaPushaPlay
statistical odds

On Wednesday's PowerBall draw - It's when we see an obvious pattern that we get suspicious says statistics expert Johan Ferreira.

South Africa has 20 new multi-millionaires and it was as "easy" as saying 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10.

The winners seemingly defied the odds by picking consecutive numbers for Wednesday's PowerBall draw.

The SA Lottery had to quickly dismiss suspicions of a set-up.

"These numbers may be unexpected but we see many players opt to play these sequences", it said.

But did the consecutive number winners actually defy the odds more than any other Lotto winners have?

The Money Show gets input from Dr Johan Ferreira, senior lecturer in Statistics at the University of Pretoria (UP).

Ferreira affirms that the chances of this "perfect" sequence occurring randomly are the same as any OTHER sequence occurring randomly.

By that I mean, the odds are equally unlikely!

Johan Ferreira, Senior lecturer in Statistics - University of Pretoria

It is important to first remember that an event or an outcome with probability close to zero is very unlikely to occur, as in this case. But the crucial component to always keep in mind - which might not be necessarily what we want to hear - is that it is not impossible.

Johan Ferreira, Senior lecturer in Statistics - University of Pretoria

For our Lottery design there are more than 42 million unique combinations of six distinct numbers that can be drawn. All of these combinations are equally likely.

Johan Ferreira, Senior lecturer in Statistics - University of Pretoria

It's when we see an obvious pattern that we get suspicious, he says.

Would we have had the same response if for example multiples of five were drawn, 5-10-20-25-30? Probably. But remember that is as likely as 5-6-7-8-9-10, etc...

Johan Ferreira, Senior lecturer in Statistics - University of Pretoria

Listen to the conversation on The Money Show:




2 December 2020 7:23 PM
Tags:
The Money Show
SA Lottery
Bruce Whitfield
National Lottery
Lotto PowerBall
lotto numbers
Johan Ferreira
#PhandaPushaPlay
statistical odds

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