NASTASYA TAY + YIANNIS HADJIASLANIS
There had been other pageants on the continent, but not like this one.
They couldn't find enough eligible young ladies to enter, so they reduced the height requirement 5 centimetres below the 1.7 metre requirement.
Africa's first Miss Chinese Cosmos: a title that would send one bikini-clad member of the Chinese diaspora to the only annual beauty competition held in China, with the promise of prestige (screened to millions on China's Pheonix satellite television channel), and a brightly lit future as a Beijing celebrity, as the previous winners bore testament.
We spent the evening backstage with the 20 contestants - some newer mainland migrants, others South African-born for generations - vying for the crown.
You can have a look at more images from the pageant by downloading a contact sheet.
To get a password to access that section of the site, get in touch.