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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

12-Billion Lire Whistle

ROME () -- An Italian referee who suspended a second division match one minute from time because of fans invading the pitch prevented one unlucky person from becoming a multi-millionaire on the weekend.


The National Olympic Committee CONI, which oversees the country's Totocalcio pools system, said on Monday one punter had been heading for a record 12 billion lire ($7.6 million) win when the Foggia-Salernitana match was called off.


They said only one of the 11 coupons that had 12 correct results out of 13 had Salernitana down to win. The visiting team were 3-1 ahead when the game was stopped.


Referee Marcello Cardona, who cancelled the match in the 89th minute, was unrepentant on Monday.


"You'd better ask him," he said when asked on television how he felt about losing someone a fortune. `"All I can say is that I tried to bring the match to a conclusion. Patience. I hope he wins again, maybe as big an amount."