And finally… catch of the pay

An unemployed Italian fisherman has hooked the big one while still on dry land after he picked up someone’s discarded lottery scratch-card worth €100,000.

The man from the southern Italian town of Mola di Bari was a gambler who frequently checked discarded scratch-cards to see whether their original owners had overlooked some winning numbers.

The practice had occasionally brought the man, who is in his fifties, small sums that other punters had not bothered to collect.

The valuable scratch-card had been abandoned in a petrol station in the man’s home town, the Gazzetta del Mezzogiorno reported.

A customer had thrown away the card without properly scratching all the numbers, the newspaper said. “A real stroke of luck, of the kind that doesn’t change your life but will grant this man, a former fisherman, who is popular at the fishmarket, and who had lost his job, a little bit of serenity,” it said.

Italy’s “scratch and win” lottery is the most popular form of legal gambling in the country and has distributed winnings of €2 billion so far this year.