It’s the time of the year again when ladies from around the world gather for the biggest and the oldest beauty pageant: Miss World.
This year, 117 contestants are competing for the right to wear the coveted blue crown and be adjudged the most beautiful in the world and the face of the “Beauty With A Purpose” (BWAP) campaign. Now that all fast track events are done, it is time to finally pick who should win the crown.
If the fast track events are an indication, then Miss Philippines Catriona Gray has the highest probability of bringing home the bacon. This 23-year-old model and singer started her journey on a high note with a Talent round placement, where she eventually placed second overall. She was among the most active and dedicated on social media so her Multimedia challenge win did not come as a surprise.
Aside from that, Catriona is also among the five finalists of the all-important BWAP. Her project focuses on the lack of education for the children in Tondo, Manila. She partnered with NGO called Young Focus to purchase and renovate a three-story building that will become a new pre-school center.
Aside from her philanthropy, Catriona is a well-spoken lady. Her gift of gab and social media influence could help the pageant to further its causes. Like Megan Young, the Philippines’ first Miss World winner, Catriona is a complete package. She has the beauty, the brains and the heart for charity. Overall, Catriona definitely embodies Miss World’s ethos of “Beauty With A Purpose”.
Now, who are the threats for the Philippines’ second Miss World crown?
Hungary’s Tímea Gelencsér is likely to carry the banner for Europe. Her good performance in Sports and Talent rounds are proof that this 22-year-old acrobatics champion could pull off an upset come finals night. Hungary has never won
Another crown contender is former Miss Universe candidate Yaritza Reyes of the Dominican Republic. Many have noticed that she toned down her fierceness to fit the Miss World mold. But you just can’t take the stage diva out of her. She finished 3rd in the Top Model competition and is a finalist in the Sports challenge. This Caribbean island last won in 1982 and Yaritza has all the qualities to end the drought.
After last year’s first princess finish, the world’s largest nation sent another stunner. Russia’s Yana Dobrovolskaya is one of the prettiest in the batch. This 19-year-old professional ballroom dancer is a European champion in 2015. Her experience was enough to bring give her a placement in the Miss World talent round. With her inimitable charm and beauty, it won’t be a surprise if she wins it all tonight.
Rounding up the Top 5 is Africa’s best bet this year, is Kenya’s Evelyn Thungu. She seemed to be ignored at first but is has now solidified her status after her Top 5 placements in the Top Model competition and the BWAP. Evelyn tackles female genital mutilation in her project.
Indonesia’s Natasha Mannuela made it to the Top 5 of both the Top Model and BWAP competitions. Indonesia has placed in Miss World since 2011 and this year would be no different. And with rumors of the country hosting the pageant again next year, it won’t come as a shock if Natasha places very high tonight.
United States’s Audra Mari was well-loved during her Miss USA 2014 stint where she ended up as 1st runner-up. But to be honest, she is just under the radar in Miss World. But home-court advantage will work for her advantage, add to that she could definitely nail the Q&A if she makes it.
One of the most popular candidates is Mongolia’s Bayartsetseg Altangerel. In fact she topped the public voting on Mobstar to win the Talent challenge. She is definitely one step ahead of the rest as she will be performing her quick change and magic act during the finals night. Compared to her Miss Earth stint last year, Bela is looking better than ever and the crown if definitely within reach.
Puerto Rico’s Stephanie Del Valle is also one to watch out for. Her svelte figure and stunning face are among her advantages. She made an impact with her Talent round placement and is among the well-dressed candidates.This 19-year-old law and communications student is definitely the best from the island since 2011.
Completing the Top 10 is Ukraine’s Oleksandra Kucherenko. This 19-year-old student works as a model and ballroom coach. Her dancing prowess earned her a spot in the Talent round. But aside from that, her unassuming beauty is just shining throughout the competition.
Any of the following girls could also pull off surprises tonight: Australia‘s Madeline Cowe, South Africa‘s Ntandoyenkosi Kunene, India‘s Priyadarshini Chatterjee, France‘s Morgane Edvige, Venezuela‘s Diana Croce, Ireland‘s Niamh Kennedy, China PR‘s Jing Kong (Toop Model winner), Slovakia‘s Kristína Činčurová, Cook Islands‘ Natalia Short (Sports winner) and Nepal‘s Asmi Shrestha.
Here’s the final prediction ranking:
1 Philippines – Catriona Gray
2 Hungary – Tímea Gelencsér
3 Dominican Republic – Yaritza Reyes
4 Russia – Yana Dobrovolskaya
5 Kenya – Evelyn Thungu
6 Indonesia – Natasha Mannuela
7 United States – Audra Mari
8 Mongolia – Bayartsetseg Altangerel
9 Puerto Rico – Stephanie Del Valle
10 Ukraine – Oleksandra Kucherenko
11 Australia – Madeline Cowe
12 South Africa – Ntandoyenkosi Kunene
13 India – Priyadarshini Chatterjee
14 France – Morgane Edvige
15 Venezuela – Diana Croce
16 Ireland – Niamh Kennedy
17 China PR – Jing Kong
18 Slovakia – Kristína Činčurová
19 Cook Islands – Natalia Short
20 Nepal – Asmi Shrestha Haraya