President congratulates Ireland's Miss World winner


A huge welcome home party is being planned for 19-year-old Miss Ireland, Rosanna Davison, daughter of singer Chris de Burgh, who was crowned Miss World 2003 yesterday in China's first international beauty pageant.

The President, Mrs McAleese, sent her congratulations to the UCD student on her success.

"I would like to describe myself as a fun-loving yet humble person and hopefully a great ambassador for my country and for women all around the world," Ms Davison said when asked to describe her life and character just before the result was announced.

Runner-up was Miss Canada, Nazanin Afshin-Jam, 24. Chinese contestant Qi Guan, a fashion designer, was second runner-up in the country's third attempt at grabbing the crown.

In contrast to last year's pageant, moved to Britain from Nigeria following Muslim-Christian riots sparked by controversy over the contest, more than 100 beauty queens displayed their talents on the peaceful, semi-tropical island of Hainan.

After the show it was announced that the 2004 competition will return to China.