BLUE TEAM: This team is rather evenly mixed in terms of regions, but well, we know that Asians are the standouts in this group. Two highly regarded favorites are found on this team. Let’s now meet them starting with:
ALBANIA – Ersela KurtI. This blonde made the Top 32 in Beach Fashion. She hasn’t made much inroads in other challenge events, but she is still one worth reckoning.
BARBADOS – Regina Ramjit. She may not be considered a looker, but she seems to have a nice personality.
CAMEROON – Denise Ayena. Though there are prettier Africans out there (like Misses Cote D’Ivoire and Guinea, for instance), it is this lady who was the closest to wresting the Miss World – Africa title from Miss Ghana, with finalist finishes in both Talent (with a drum-and-dance performance) and Top Model. With the challenge champions now announced, Miss Ghana now seems to be a lock, but we have to salute the efforts by this lady, who brought forth an auspicious debut for this nation.
CHINA PR – Wei Wei Yu. It was initially perceived that this lady may make much more serious inroads into the Top 10. But aside from a Top 11 finish in Beach Fashion, she hasn’t figured in any other event. It’s now unlikely that she’ll make it a back-to-back victory for her nation, but she can still conceivably make serious inroads into the finals.
CHINESE TAIPEI – Cinzia Chiang. She may not have figured in any challenge event, but she is well regarded by pageant fans and pundits. One of the better contenders fielded by this country in this pageant.
COSTA RICA – Yarley Marin. As expected, she has not figured in any challenge event.
CYPRUS – Kristi-Mari Agapiou. There are pageant fans and pundits who took serious notice of her, and by figuring as a reserve for her team in the Sports challenge plus a Top 10 finish in Top Model, she is in striking distance of making the final cut. She speaks with an English accent as she is presently studying in England.
DENMARK – Malene Sorensen. Many pageant fans and pundits have placed her as a possible front-runner prior to her arrival, but buzz dimmed as she set foot in Bali. Thus far, the only challenge event where she made an impression was a Top 32 finish in Beach Fashion. Still, she’s one of the better representatives from this country in recent years.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – Joely Bernat. She has one of the more active Facebook pages amongst this year’s contestants, with very frequent updates. She made her biggest splash in the Sports challenge. Though she’s not present in the Volleyball round (four of them sat out in this round), she was prominent in other challenges, along with leading her team in spirited cheering. She speaks excellent English as she’s actually based in New York.
ECUADOR – Laritza Parraga. She is regarded as one of the better-looking Latin delegates this year. At her best angles, she resembles So You Think You Can Dance Season 6 third placer Kathryn McCormick, but there are some less flattering angles especially when her thick ebony eyebrows are emphasized. She at least made an impression at Beach Fashion, making Top 32.
EL SALVADOR – Paola Ayala. Pageant fans and pundits (including myself) would probably dismiss her as an also-ran with her facial features a bit too angular for comfort, but take note: she placed 5th in Sports.
GABON – Brunilla Moussadingou. In other pageants, we’ve seen polished, competitive contenders coming from this country. This lady is unfortunately one exception but there might be some who might find her girlish vibe charming and appealing. Her best strategy is to treat her stay in Bali as a nice long vacation.
GERMANY – Amina Sabbah. The key highlight is that she got to play volleyball in the Sports challenge even if she’s not one of those who made the shortlist.
GREECE – Athina Pikraki. Her features are an acquired taste. She has thus far failed to make an impression in the challenge events, so her best prospects is a creditable showing.
GUATEMALA – Loraine Quinto. She is actually polished and well-spoken but she couldn’t seem to catch a break, failing to register in any of the challenge events. Hopefully she would earn credits for her participation in the Volleyball round of the Sports challenge.
GUINEA – Mariama Diallo. Many pageant fans and pundits presumed that the Miss World – Africa title was a competition between Miss Ghana and her, but except for her participation in the Volleyball round, she failed to figure in any of the challenge events. Still, her looks are highly regarded by pageant fans and pundits. She didn’t have a video for her Beauty with a Purpose project, but her essay with photos could be found on the Miss World website.
COMING UP: BLUE TEAM (PART 2)