After reviewing the fifty (50) Official Candidates of Miss Asia Pacific International 2018, I have decided on sharing with you the sixteen (16) ladies who – in my observations and analysis – would make the first cut during tomorrow night’s Coronation at the Newport Performing Arts Theatre inside Resorts World Manila. In alphabetical order according to the respective countries represented, they are:
Gabriela Palma of Brazil
Melissa Lopez Rios of Colombia
Jessica Melania Gonzalez Monge of Costa Rica
Madeline Ferrara of Germany
Didar Atmadja of Kazakhstan
Misheelt Narmandakh of Mongolia
Stephanie Omogun of Nigeria
Kilmara Nayubel Carvajal Salcedo of Panama
Karen Isabel Rojas of Peru
Sharifa Akeel of the Philippines
Kimberly Crespo Faria of Puerto Rico
Olga Pliusnina of Russia
Sirakan Chaiprasit of Thailand
Natalia Gurgel of Uruguay
Mariani Nataly Chacon Angarita of Venezuela
Huynh Thuy Vi of Vietnam
Up to this point, it was just a matter of completing a Semifinal lineup because cutting down the field to a more manageable nine (9) Finalists would be less stressful as these are the ones who I perceive to be consistent and well-appreciated by everyone – from the organizers, judges and members of the media all the way to the production people and the backstage personnel.
My nine ladies in the second cut are (in this order): Philippines, Brazil, Uruguay, Germany, Kazakhstan, Panama, Peru, Costa Rica and Mongolia.
I have already taken the liberty of ranking them as such because – the way I see it – the battle for the top spot is fierce among Sharifa Akeel of the Philippines, Gabriela Palma of Brazil and Natalia Gurgel of Uruguay. It won’t take a genius to determine that. Either the host country will win its first Miss Asia Pacific International under the Miss Asia and Miss Asia Pacific brand or a back-to-back victory for Brazil is in the offing. Uruguay is the likeliest spoiler and not a surprise titlist if ever. Just complete a usual Top 5, I would put in the half-Pinay Madeline Ferrara of Germany and the adorable bet of Kazakhstan – Didar Atmadja – in the mix. They will complete my magic circle.
Kilmara Nayubel Carvajal Salcedo of Panama and Karen Isabel Rojas of Peru are dark horses, but I don’t see them strongly zooming that far ahead. I wouldn’t mind if they do, however.
So the prophetic photo below during the Evening Gown Competition could also be the eventual composition of the Top 3 in the end.
I will go out on a limb and predict that Sharifa Akeel of the Philippines will be the next Miss Asia Pacific International.