Miss Philippines Ma. Ahtisa Manalo finished second in the Miss International 2018 beauty pageant in Tokyo, Japan Friday afternoon.
This is the first time that the Philippines won first runner-up in the 58-year history of the prestigious beauty contest.
Mariem Velazco of Venezuela was crowned Miss International 2018. Other winners were South Africa, 2nd runner-up; Romania, 3rd runner-up; and Colombia,
In her speech, Manalo said: “If I will be lucky enough to be chosen as Miss International 2018, I will continue to be the voice of the youth and let them know that nothing is impossible with hard work and determination.”
Earlier, Filipino pageant fans went wild as soon as Manalo made it to the Top 15 of the contest, making the Miss International pageant one of the trending
topics on social media on Friday afternoon.
Supporters of the 21-year-old beauty queen also cheered when Manalo confidently paraded in her national costume, swimsuit, and evening gown.
Other delegates who made it to the Top 15 were Romania, Mexico, Ecuador, Thailand, Australia, Paraguay, Japan, Indonesia, Ukraine, Spain and Madagascar.
From 15, Manalo made the cut to the Top 8 along with Japan, Romania, Ecuador, Colombia, Spain, South Africa, and Venezuela.
A total of 77 candidates competed in this year’s Miss International pageant.
The Philippines already won six times in the beauty tilt. Other Filipina winners were Gemma Cruz (1964), Aurora Pijuan (1970), Melanie Marquez (1979), Precious Lara Quigaman (2005), Bea Rose Santiago (2013) and Kylie Verzosa (2016).
A big fan of crime-busting television series “Charlie’s Angels,” Manalo says she wanted to become a police officer when she was young but her parents did not approve of it.
Instead, she earned a degree in accountancy from the Manuel S. Enverga University in Candelaria, Quezon. In 2016, she was crowned Binibining Niyogyugan.
Manalo said her favorite beauty queen is 2005 Miss International Precious Lara Quigaman.