Host Steve Harvey had it right, after all.
Philippine bet Gazini Ganados is the winner of the National Costume competition, the Miss Universe Organization said in a statement after the finals round of the pageant held Sunday (early Monday in Manila).
On Twitter, the MUO congratulated Gazini as it posted a photo of the 23-year-old Cebuana in her showstopping Philippine Eagle-inspired costume, made by designer Cary Santiago, during the pageant's preliminary round in Atlanta, Georgia on Saturday.
In the pageant earlier Sunday, Steve announced Gazini as the winner of the special award. However, it was Miss Malaysia Shweta Sekhon, clad in her Peranakan cusine-inspired national costume, who was on stage to receive the recognition.
“There is an eagle within me that wants to soar.” 🦅 It is with deep honor to showcase our national pride during the Miss Universe National costume show, the Philippine Eagle whose strength, power, and love for freedom exemplifies the Filipino people. Created by the master couturier Mama @carysantiago @carysantiago7 ❤️ Proud to have showcased your masterpieces in the Miss Universe stage. Your passion, dedication, and love for our country is admirable. ❤️ Here’s How To Vote for Best in National Costime Award. 1. Log in to vote.missuniverse.com 2. Click VOTE NOW. 3. Find and click National Costume. 4. Choose and Vote Miss Philippines #70 Credits to the rightful owners of the photos ❤️ #MissUniverse2019 #MissUniversePH #Philippines #MissUniverso #MissUniverso2019 #GaziniGanados #GaziniGanado5 #ForThePhilippines
Gazini, the Philippines' bet to the 68th Miss Universe, was bested by new reigning queen Miss South Africa Zozibini. She was gunning for a back-to-back win for the country in Miss Universe and be the fifth titleholder after Catriona Gray, Pia Wurtzbach (2015), Margie Moran (1973), and Gloria Diaz (1969).