One last group before the Head-to-Head Challenge wraps up in Chimelong; say hello to the ladies of Group 8:
Kenya – Magline Jeruto
Evelyn Njambi‘s a tough act to follow, but this is striking lady’s holding up well. She has amazing presence and channels Oscar winner (and fellow Kenyan) Lupita N’yongo with her buzz cut. And since her country usually excels in the Beauty with the Purpose challenge, she will surely gain points with her platform, which is autism awareness.
Ireland – Lauren McDonagh
She has a poignant back story as she lost her brother to muscular dystrophy when she was only eight. Now she vows to help people inflicted with the disease, as part of her BWAP project. Her sincerity and dedication are admirable, but that may not be enough for her to stand out.
Russia – Polina Popova
It appears that this beautiful blonde is poised to vindicate her country’s unjust non-placement last year. Apart from her angelic face, her strongest suit is her impressive command of both English and Mandarin (she lived in China for two years). Her slight drawback is that she sounded less confident in interview than in her introductory video.
Cyprus – Helena Tselepi
This nutrition student could pass as a more attractive Sarah Silverman. She certainly has the great looks to justify her being a candidate, but not the enthusiasm. She looked bored through the entire thing.
Mongolia – Enkhjin Tseevendash
To those who are wondering, her first name sounds like “Angie”. She’s a cute semifinal possibility, and her introductory video is a sublime cinematic piece of work, typical from candidates from her country. In her interview, she spoke highly of her father, who once trekked Mt. Everest without an oxygen mask. She’s now a mountain climber herself. But for now, she has another metaphorical summit to reach: The Top 40.
Singapore – Laanya Ezra Asogan
Her country was initially slated to host some of the pre-pageant events, but was quietly dropped from the itinerary for reasons unknown. Had that plan pushed through, this girl would have been a worthy host delegate, as she calls to mind a South Asian Pia Wurtzbach. There are moments of narrative disconnect in her introductory video – e.g. it prominently features her tackling a punching bag, even when in her VO, she says she likes hanging out with friends. Well, at least the athleticism paid off: she made the Top 24 of the Sports Challenge.
PAGEANT GEEKS’ TOP 8 RANKING: