MANILA, Philippines – Samantha Panlilio admitted feeling heartbroken over her Miss Grand International 2021 stint in Thailand.
On Saturday, December 4, Samantha bowed out early in the competition after failing to make it to the Top 20, shocking many Filipino pageant fans. Prior to pageant night, Samantha had entered the Top 10 Best in National Costume and Top 5 Best in Swimsuit.
“I am completely heartbroken but I know that I did my best and that’s all that matters. I feel nothing but grateful. My heart is warm,” the 25-year-old beauty queen said in an Instagram post on Sunday, December 5.
Addressing each member of her team, fellow Filipina beauty queens, her fans, and Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. (BBPCI), Samantha expressed her gratitude for their support, saying that it was “an opportunity of a lifetime.”
In a separate post, Samantha also wrote about how she did her best in the international pageant.
“I genuinely enjoyed this journey and I know deep in my heart na lumaban tayo (that we put up a fight)…. I will forever hold these memories close to my heart,” she said.
Samantha added that she feels “honored, humbled, and grateful” to be even given the chance to represent the Philippines. “It will take some time for me to heal but I know that this is not the end of my journey and wherever life takes me next, lalaban pa rin ako (I’ll still continue to fight); the true Filipina spirit,” she wrote.
BBPCI also praised Samantha for her performance at the pageant. “Thank you for giving the Philippines a good fight in Thailand. We are very proud of you, our Binibining Pilipinas Grand International 2021,” they said.
Vietnam’s Nguyen Thuc Thuy Tien was named Miss Grand International 2021.
No Filipina beauty queen has yet won the Miss Grand International crown. Nicole Cordoves (2016) and Samantha Bernardo (2020) almost clinched the title after they both finished as first runner-up. – Rappler.com