Due to the country’s infatuation with gambling, it’s no surprise that the biggest keno wins happen in Australia. The amount of punters down under is staggering, and has created a larger than life gambling industry. In total Aussies gamble over $23.65 billion a year, and that figure is steadily growing. This staggering amount of cash has paved the way for the highest concentration of pokies machines in the world. Despite the fact that most punters are enchanted by pokies, keno maintains a strong following in Australia.
On top of being an iconic game, keno wins often prove to be huge. These payouts routinely exceed expectations, and have the potential to turn ordinary people into millionaires. Big wins are the epitome of the dream that many punters are chasing. While most of us will never achieve this, some punters got lucky enough to make history.
To truly understand the magnitude of Australia’s keno industry, it’s essential to examine the biggest payouts. Few games offer wins this size, which makes these victories that much more novel. To shed some light on this anomaly, we compiled a list of the biggest keno wins in Australia. These larger-than-life prizes are so captivating that they can’t be ignored, so discover how some punters struck it rich!
Biggest Keno Wins in Australia
Keno Win #3: $3.17 Million – Back in 2011, one Queensland retiree was struggling to get by. He sold firewood for a living and used this meager income to bet the same number for 25 years. While most people would have given up after a decade, he kept playing until he made his dream a reality. When playing at the Jimboomba Country Tavern in Logan City, his numbers appeared on the screen.
Not wanting to cause a scene, he quietly shook his head in disbelief and walked out the door. To make sure he had actually won, he went home and called the Keno company. When it was finally confirmed, the Queensland retiree became $3.17 million richer. This story is just as much about persistence as it is luck, since he refused to abandon his dreams.
Keno Win #2: $4.36 Million – In June 2013, one retiree received a huge blessing after a massive loss. Just two years earlier, the 68-year-old man’s wife died. He had watched her waste away before his eyes at the Calvary Mater Hospital. Still intent on playing keno, he continued playing until he struck a $4.36 million payout. The Newcastle native chose to remain anonymous, but promised to donate generously to the hospital that cared for his wife. While this story is bitter-sweet, it shows that good deeds can generate unexpected rewards.
Keno Win #1: $7.5 Million – While the rest of the entries on this list were won by humble retirees, Zeljko Ranogejec is the complete opposite. Nicknamed the “the joker” by casino staff, this man is easily Australia’s most flamboyant punter. It’s estimated that he bets $600-$800 million a year, which equates to 8% of Tabcorp’s $10 billion annual turnover. If this figure wasn’t shocking enough, he also bets tens of millions each year with local bookmakers.
Unsurprisingly, this gambling tycoon made keno history in 1994. After playing at the North Ryde RSL Club for days on end, he won $7.5 million at keno. While many speculate that he spent more than $7.5 million to win this prize, in the end it doesn’t matter. The level of excess that Ranogajec showcases annually makes this massive win just another drop in the bucket.