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A lottery winner has said that he might treat his ex to dinner – after they split just a month before his big win.

Paul Long was working in a car factory in Dagenham when he hit the jackpot. His girlfriend of five years had moved out of the house that they shared on February 1st, only for him to pick up £9.3 million in the National Lottery draw last Saturday night, reports the Mirror.

 “Let’s be honest, if I was with someone and you’ve just split up and they go and win £9 million on the lottery, you’re going to be gutted aren’t you?” the 55-year-old Leyton Orient fan told the paper.
Father of three and life-long Leyton Orient fan from Wickford, Paul Long, celebrates after his Lucky Dip ticket matched all six numbers to scoop the £9,339,858 Lotto Jackpot on Saturday 24 March, at the Orsett Hall Hotel, in Orsett, Essex.

“You never know, I might take her for a holiday or a meal.”

The Daily Mirror managed to speak to his ex and ask her if she was happy for him, to which she diplomatically replied: “I suppose so.”

Paul bought his winning ticket on a whim after watching his boys turn over Woking 3-0 in their recent National League clash.

Leyton Orient were relegated from the league last year amid financial difficulties, something which might now change now that one of their long-suffering fans has scooped a £9 million bonanza.

“Leyton Orient had not won at home since Boxing Day, we won 3-0 and I thought, ‘This is brilliant’ – so I bought a random Lucky Dip online. I had £7.90 in my account so bought two lines,” he told The Daily Mirror.


Credit: PA

“I woke up the next morning and had an email that I thought said I’d won £9,000. I sent it to my mate and he said, ‘Not being funny but you’ve won £9 million’. All of a sudden my phone’s red hot – everyone loves you.”

Leyton Orient chief executive Danny Macklin was present at the ceremony to hand the cash over to Mr Long and said that the club were going to treat him in the hope that he might choose to invest in the Orient.

The club’s current owner, American businessman Kent Teague, has recently admitted that it was unlikely that he would recoup investment on the club any time soon.

“Kent’s losing money, but if you guys can convince me otherwise then it might be different,” said Paul.

“We’ll see what they say. I haven’t got as many millions to lose as Kent, but if I can help them in some way – whether it be through sponsorship or something – that could be different.”

Paul moved out of his home with his ex and into a new place in Wickford, Essex, when they parted amicably in February. He was looking after her cat when he won the millions.

“I was with her the day I won it. I went to see her on Saturday. We split up amicably,” he told the Mirror.

“She asked if I wanted to stay over on the way back from football on Saturday to look after the cat because she was away.

“On Sunday she came in when I was on the phone to Camelot.”

Paul said he lives modestly and celebrated with a beer and a cup of tea.

“I had one bottle of Coors Light to celebrate and then thought ‘I know what I need, a cuppa’. I might have added an extra sugar. I think I even watched Sunday Brunch,” he told the Mirror.

The height his ambitions previously had been to buy a Ford EcoSport, which he promptly did on receiving the money. “I went to a car show and bought the car – I didn’t want anything too flash. Maybe I’ll upgrade to a better brand of tea bag.”

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