Fairest lass in the land is ... Marilyn
MARILYN Ramos was crowned Miss South Africa 2012 at the Sun City Superbowl last night.
Judging by the crowd's screams every time Pearl Nxele so much as blinked, it felt like Ramos staged something of a coup.
Almost like a well-trained thoroughbred, she never let her competitors out of her sight, even when she was not ahead.
Nxele was named second princess, and Stacey Webb the first princess.
The 21-year-old Ramos, from Klerksdorp, beat a slew of lasses from Western Cape.
And just before people get ideas, she is not related to Absa CEO Maria Ramos.
Speaking after her win, Ramos said: "When I was announced, I honestly felt confused because I was thinking of choreography and where to go. All that I was telling myself was GHD. It means greatly blessed, highly favoured and deeply loved."
She said she could hear her brother screaming for her in the crowd.
Looking ahead to her reign, and reflecting on the daunting task of replacing Melinda Bam, the 1.74m beauty said: "I feel like from now on I'm not going to imitate other Miss South Africas. "I think if my personality wasn't good enough, the judges wouldn't have picked me."
Some of the celebrities in the crowd included TV power couple Connie and Shona Ferguson, poet Gcina Mhlophe, Generations actor Jafta Mamabolo and Rock Lefatshe singer and actress KB Motsilanyane.
While the new Miss SA was fielding questions from the media backstage, her proud parents Victor and Yolandi waited patiently outside the conference room.
"When she started modelling, I was against any sort of pageantry, but since she started winning some [competitions], it changed," Yolandi said.
The pair had "all of three minutes" to talk to their daughter before the show started.
The sound was terrible. At times, the performers were not in sync with the backing tracks; and
None of the finalists exuded an air of a world beater.
Toya Delazy outshone the rest of the performers, and surprised with her dancing, which is normally restricted to pumping fists and jumping during her live gigs;
The hilarious scene of the cleaning ladies being chased off stage by the stage manager as the show returned from an ad break. The pair had the impossible task of sweeping ticker tape after the evening gown section; and
The show was a compact 90 minutes.