MISS WORLD 2014: AT THE HOMESTRETCH–YELLOW TEAM (PART 2)

GERMANY – Egzonita Ala.  She can be regarded as attractive, but with the exception of making the Sports challenge shortlist, she has not made any significant impact.

GHANA – Nadia Naa Ntalu.  She’s a far cry from her predecessor, the stunning and bright Miss World 2013 2nd runner-up Carranzar Naa Okailey Shooter.  It’s unlikely she’ll make the final cut considering she has not figured in any challenge event.

GREECE – Eleni Kokkinou.  See CYPRUS, albeit slightly prettier and more polished.

GUADELOUPE – Wendy Metony.  Her features are a tad too exotic for my taste.  Considering she has not figured in any challenge event, it’s unlikely she’ll make the final cut.

GUAM – Chanel Cruz Jarett.  She previously competed at Miss International two years ago.  Just like in her stint in Okinawa, she made a great impression, but not enough to make the final cut.  She deserves better than what she’s getting–she’s one of the contenders for the Holly Carpenter Award.

GUINEA – Halimatou Diallo.  She’s raw and unpolished, and her attempts to look fierce in the Top Model and Designer Dress competitions only made her look grumpy.

HAITI – Carolyn Desert.  I’ve heard her speak and am impressed with her fluent English and vibrant personality.  She also makes an indelible presence with her shaved head.  I think she secured herself a placement in the Top 20 and possibly the Continental Queen of the Caribbean with her placements in Sports and Top Model.

KENYA – Idah Nguma.  I’m not into her looks, but she got a Top Five showing in Beach Fashion and Top Ten showing in Beauty with a Purpose, which means she is likely to secure a placement in the Top 20.

LATVIA – Liliana Garkaine.  She’s pretty, but not that polished.  With the right packaging she can make more serious inroads.

LEBANON – Saly Greige.  Now here is my front-runner for the Holly Carpenter Award.  She has glamour and gorgeousness and pageant fans and pundits are raving about her.  Yet she doesn’t figure in any challenge event.  Even if she scored high in interview, she will then drop down the rankings as the scores from the challenge events kick in.

LESOTHO – Nthole Matela.  I think it’s already achievement enough that she made the shortlist of the Sports challenge.

NETHERLANDS – Tatjana Maul.  She doesn’t look like a typical Dutch woman–I think she has a mix of either Indian, Indonesian, or Middle Eastern ethnicity.  Anyway, she seems to secure her placement in the Top 20 with her Top Five finish in Multimedia, Top 15 placement in Talent, and being a Top Ten finalist for Beauty with a Purpose.  Her cause is actually the cause sponsored by her national pageant for years, the Free-A-Girl campaign.  What helped her bring this cause to the forefront was her 12-hour demonstration sleeping in the streets and how she focused on the issue of “loverboys”, men who prey on their victims by first becoming their boyfriends then turning their victims into prostitutes.

PHILIPPINES – Valerie Weigmann.  Filipino pageant fans and pundits (including myself) had high expectations for this lady to deliver a back-to-back victory.  We all thought she would ace the World Dress Designer and Top Model challenge events, but to our shock she failed to make the short list.  Based on the picture below, she probably just didn’t stand out as she could have–should she have worn her hair loose and parted in the middle like Oxana Fedorova?  But the World Designer Dress, I think the Michael Cinco gown was not really a problem–perhaps it’s simply the judges of the event are not into ballgowns, even if it’s a gorgeous ballgown.  At least she got shortlisted in Beauty with a Purpose with her Musikaramay project, helping the indigenous Aetas via music.   I’m still hopeful that perhaps she bubbled under the Top Five in Beach Fashion and Multimedia and that she could at least secure a Top 20 showing, even if she is unlikely to generate that coveted back-to-back.

SPAIN – Lourdes Rodriguez.  She is great looking but she’s no Elena Ibarbia, Top Six Miss World 2013 finalist.  She figured in two shortlists:  Top 15 in Talent and Top 27 in Beauty with a Purpose.

TUNISIA – Wahiba Arres.  She’s attractive, but well, she was overshadowed by the standouts.  Failing to be shortlisted in challenge events do not help her cause.

With all of the Yellow Team accounted for, here is how my leaderboard stacks up:

SHOO-IN:  FINLAND, KENYA, NETHERLANDS

LIKELIEST:  CZECH REPUBLIC, FRANCE, HAITI, PHILIPPINES, SPAIN

CHALLENGE FACTOR: COTE D’IVOIRE, CURACAO, ECUADOR, EL SALVADOR, FIJI, GERMANY, LESOTHO

POPULAR VOTE FACTOR: CHAD

EXCELLENT:  CYPRUS, EGYPT, ETHIOPIA, GABON, GREECE, GUAM, LEBANON

VERY STRONG: GUADELOUPE, LATVIA, TUNISIA

STRONG:  EQUATORIAL GUINEA, GEORGIA, GHANA

GOOD:  GUINEA

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