Catriona Gray (image courtesy of Jory Rivera for OPMB Worldwide)

Like the majority of my countrymen, I was shell-shocked at the end of Miss World 2016 when Miss Philippines (Catriona Gray) was not announced the winner as many have expected.  And it’s not without lack of effort on her part as she was practically perfection all through the night, which makes the defeat sting.  But while there are several netizens who are in uproar and expressed extremely negative messages against the Miss World Organization over these results, after quickly undergoing the five stages of grief I have come to accept and respect the decision–I still disagree with it, but I choose not to be disagreeable.  I’ll discuss this further when I post a full-fledged review.

Anyway, I got 15 out of 20 right, and with the five I didn’t get, four of them in my “Striking Distance” list.  The one who was outside my radar was Ghana (Delali Kemavor)–I guess I have yet to learn how to appreciate her type of exotic beauty, but I realize she does have a radiance about her and can look distinctively elegant.


Though I included her in my “Striking Distance” list on the basis of her BWAP project, I was also shocked how far Belgium (Lenty Frans) has fared, as she ended up as Miss World – Europe as she’s the only European who made the Top Ten, eclipsing the likes of Hungary (Timea Gelencser).  We may attribute to her most likely acing the interview and the judges digging her medical school background, along with her BWAP project.


There is one clear winner for the Ruth Ocumarez award, and she also is the Holly Carpenter award winner–she is none other than Mexico (Ana Girault).  Her over-the-top antics and that nude selfie leak may have done her in, even if she’s forgiven and allowed to continue to compete.


I got six of the Top Ten right and three of the Top Five.  In some ways, we kinda expect Dominican Republic (Yaritza Reyes) and Indonesia (Natasha Mannuela) to rank high, though many feel the latter on the basis of key power players.  I predicted the eventual winner, Puerto Rico (Stephanie del Valle) to remain relegated in the Top 20, but I have a high regard for her and know if she won favor to advance further (thanks to a situation similar to Indonesia), she’ll do well.  Her Q&A responses and overall presence made her win kinda justified, though of course, I still maintain that Catriona was the best of them all.

Miss World 2016 Stephanie del Valle (image courtesy of Jory Rivera for OPMB Worldwide)

Surprise results and stunning upsets are part and parcel of every pageant, and to be honest, so are elements of influence-peddling.  Sometimes it works to our advantage and other times it may not, and perhaps it’s just unfortunate that this time it came a bit at our expense.  I’ll discuss these issues further in my full-fledged Miss World review, but for now, I’ll say that congratulations to the winner as she is a strong choice, and let’s respect the judges’ decisions even if it didn’t work in our favor this time.  There might be big and better things in store for Catriona in the future.