Five secrets of winning the lottery - what would you have won?

New tool reveals what you would have won - and may have clues for winning strategies

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Dare you use the new lottery winnings calculator? Gambling site MrGamez has put together a new calculator that lets you enter your lucky numbers, and it will calculate how much you would have won if you had played those numbers every week since the National Lottery was launched more than 20 years ago. The question is whether you can bear to see what you could have won.

The good news is that for the vast majority of people, this is actually a great insight into the money you have saved by not entering.

If David Cameron entered a combination of his date of birth and George Osborne's, for example, he would have won a grand total of £455. However, in order to enter one line every week, he would have spent over £1,200 - so by not entering he would have saved almost £750.

Meanwhile, if Tom Hiddleston entered a combination of his birthday and Benedict Cumberbatch's, he would have won just £535, and by having spent more than £1,200 he would have lost more than £650.

There is always a risk you could pop your numbers in, and discover that by now you could have won your millions, blown the lot, and spent your life being a cautionary tale for others. It's up to you whether you take that chance.

How to win

This process should be enough to make most people realise they may well be wasting their money on Lottery tickets, but MrGamez claims it can show you something different - it reveals five secrets to winning.

1. The odds of winning the jackpot with numbers that have won the jackpot in the past are vanishingly small, so before you pick your numbers, it might be worth running them through the calculator to see if they have been picked before.

2.It's not worth basing your choice on the numbers that have been drawn most commonly in the past. This strategy would mean picking 23, 40, 38, 30, 33 and 34, but the calculator shows that this would have netted just £1,685 - a profit of just over £400. This is better than a loss, but it's hardly a sure-fire way of guaranteeing a big win.

3. Picking the numbers 1,2,3,4,5 and 6 are not as bad an idea as they might seem - because over the years they have picked up £1,575. This is far better than David Cameron and Tom Hiddleston would have done.

4. Don't opt for the most overdue numbers. Every time the numbers are picked they are entirely randomly chosen, so there's no reason why those that haven't been chosen recently should come out this time round. Interestingly the current most overdue numbers (45, 49, 7, 24, 20, 3) historically would only have won you £640.

5. And don't play with birthdays. The Lottery has 59 balls - so you are excluding 28 of them by choosing days and months. Given that so many other people choose birthdays, if your numbers do come up, there's also a higher chance of you having to share your prize with other people.

To this, of course, we can add one other. The whole point of a lottery is that it is completely unpredictable, so even with this clever tool, nobody can tell the numbers that are most likely to be picked. The only thing we know is that on average, most people lose.

But what do you think? Are you tempted?

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