KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 ― Penang student Jane Teoh pipped popular TV host Alexis Sue-Ann to the Miss Universe Malaysia 2018 crown last night.
With over 32,000 Instagram followers, part-time model Alexis looked set to go all the way when she was named in the final two at the star-studded final at Majestic Hotel here.
But it was fresh-faced Jane, also a part-time model studying accounting and finance, who emerged the winner.
She was crowned by last year's victor Samantha Katie James.
“I never expected it,” Jane said. “I used to be shy but I've proved myself tonight. Doing this I've learnt to be more courageous and confident in myself.”
Miss Universe Malaysia Organisation director Datin Elaine Daly tipped the 20-year-old for greater things as she prepares to undergo training.
“Jane is wonderful as she is but the Jane you'll see going to Miss Universe will be a 100-times improved.”
Runner-up Alexis said she was pleased to have made it so far.
She also praised the winner, “Not just me, we have all watched (Jane) grow as a person in the past three months. Seeing her progress, we are all very proud of her.”
Daly added, “There will be naysayers and people not happy with the result, but we are supporting a fellow Malaysian. That is the bottom line.”
KL-based contestants Liliana Fernandez claimed third place while Jasebel Robert finished fourth.
The evening concluded the search for the new Miss Universe Malaysia which began with casting last June.
A shortlist of 50 girls was whittled down to 17 contestants who took place in preliminaries earlier this week.
The competition's top six was determined on Tuesday while four more contestants were announced here to complete the top 10 tonight.
Jane, who also took home the Miss Online Personality title, will take part in the Miss Universe pageant later this year. The location and date is to be determined.