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Miss Universe 2020: Fan favs go head-to-head

This year will mark the 69th edition of the Miss Universe beauty pageant. South Africa’s queen, Zozibini Tunzi, will be crowning her successor at the end of the event. It is rumored to be held in the U.S in May (fingers crossed). A group of talented queens will be going head to head in the preliminary competition in front of international audiences. You best believe people have already picked their favorites.

I decided to assess each candidate’s strengths and weaknesses and hypothesize who is more likely to win the pageant. I randomly drew countries from a bowl and picked two countries to compare against one another. I’ll analyze I believe would win, if these were the final two standing. I am going to hypothetically reviewing each candidate’s performance in three main areas: swimsuit, evening gown and onstage questioning, based on their past performances. 

See my complete list of Miss Universe 2021 favs

USA vs India

Miss USA and Miss Philippines
USA: Asya Michelle Branch, India: Adline Castelino

It’s been nearly 20 years since India has captured the title of Miss Universe but the recent contestant, Adline Castelino, looks promising and is a popular favorite. However, when it comes down to the swimsuit round of the pageant, USA takes the cake for me with her incredible physique. In the evening gown portion, India has an edge since the USA has not had substantial wardrobe styling for some years now. 

USA has a strong command of her onstage question. However, what provides India an edge is the fact that she is not afraid to speak from the heart and with conviction, whereas the USA can sometimes lack personality in her answers. It is a close competition since both the USA and India are outstanding contestants. I, however, am leaning towards India as the overall winner between the two as we have seen India improving gradually over the past months. Unfortunately, we’ve heard little from Miss USA.

Dominican Republic vs Philippines

Miss Dominican Republic vs Miss Philippines
Dominican Republic: Kimberly Jiménez, Philippines: Rabiya Mateo

Right off the bat, Dominican Republic win my high score for swimsuit. She’s undeniably fit and stunning on stage. Although, when it comes to evening gown, Philippines wins by a landslide. Because the Philippines consistently shows up with outstanding wardrobe. Moreover, Rabiya Mateo’s exceptional walk and facial expressions speak for themselves. 

For onstage questioning, we have not experienced many personality-driven responses from Dominican Republic, which gives Philippines an edge. Philippines does know English and that puts her at an advantage at making her point come across as clearer to the judges. Overall, I see Philippines coming out on top in this match up.

Indonesia vs South Africa

Miss Indonesia Miss South Africa
Indonesia: Ayu Maulida, South Africa: Natasha Joubert

South Africa and Indonesia are both powerful candidates for the title. Indonesia seems much more promising when it comes to swimsuit as she has already won the Face of Asia competition along with her national title. Add to that the fact that she is a professional runway model and it’s hard not to assume that Indonesia is going to kill it in swimsuit. However, the evening gown portion is likely going to be dominated by South Africa because of their outstanding styling, compliments of Werner Wessels. South Africa has a tendency to underwhelm in the preliminary competition, but they undoubtedly bring their A-game to gown styling for the finals. 

Between the two queens, Indonesia has a strong edge when it comes to onstage questions. Miss Indonesia can speak English and has, over the years, given some intelligent and thoughtful answers. On the flip side, I take into consideration that Natasha was 2nd runner up at Miss South Africa. I believe there is some room for improvement for this queen’s onstage question. As it appears, amongst the two, Indonesia could take the title home.

See Natasha’s performance at Miss South Africa 2020

Thailand vs Puerto Rico

Thailand: Amanda Obdam, Puerto Rico: Estefanía Soto Torres

Miss Thailand is a promising competitor, considering that Miss Universe Thailand 2019 finished in the top 5 last year. She can crush the swimsuit portion of the evening as her performance is a combination of playful, sexy, and extremely well executed. Just take a look at one of her best performances. Puerto Rico has a strong walk under her belt as well, but when it comes to evening gown, Thailand wins again. Thailand has had some of the best stylings for gowns throughout the years and Amanda Obdam has an exceptional onstage presence. 

For the onstage question, Puerto Rico takes it. She is smart and possesses exceptional speaking abilities. Confidence is essential when it comes to onstage questions. Despite her outstanding walk, Thailand still needs a bit more practice as she stumbles through her onstage questions at times which can indicate a lack of confidence. 

Between the two queens, there is a huge chance that Puerto Rico can take the title home. In recent years, it has not been the overall performance but the onstage question that has taken the precedence. Safe to say, if Thailand works on her onstage questioning, she can easily win but so far, between the two, Puerto Rico is the winner solely due to her great onstage questioning. 

Venezuela vs Romania

Miss Venezuela and Romania
Venezuela: Mariangel Villasmil Arteaga, Romania: Bianca Tirsin

Needless to say, Venezuela is a powerhouse just like India but they have not been placing as high up the ladder for some years now. In spite of that, Venezuela could edge Romania out in swimsuit. Romania has a great walk and her gown styling has been exceptional. Her styling is exceptional and fresh which makes it more likely for her to win against Venezuela in the evening gown portion. 

In recent years Venezuela has struggled through the final on stage question. If Venezuela decides to use a translator instead of communicating in English, Romania could potentially take the 2020 title. Another reason why Romania could win is her ability to bring something new to the table. Miss Universe hasn’t had a winner from Romania, or even a placement. She could be seen as someone fresh and pleasantly unique. Her newness and unexpectedness could prove to be a big factor in Romania’s win and she could place above Venezuela. Sometimes, being new, unexpected, and authentic can be an asset for a queen when it comes to pageantry.

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