Greece wins 2005 Eurovision song contest

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Sunday, May 22, 2005

The Eurovision Song Contest 2005 was won yesterday by the entry from Greece, Helena Paparizou, singing My Number One, second place going to the entry from Malta and third place going to Romania.

The competition was held in Palace of Sports in downtown Kiev, Ukraine, after its entry, Ruslana, had won the 2004 contest singing Wild Dances. Semi-finals had been held on May 19, 2005. 10 out of 25 countries with the highest scores in the semi-finals then joined 14 already pre-qualified countries in the final. Both events were televised across Europe.

More than 6000 spectators attended the event. Organisers hope that it will boost Ukraine's image abroad and increase tourism, while the country's new government hopes that it will also give a modest boost to the long-term goal of acquiring European Union membership.

Bulgaria and Moldova took part for the first time while Hungary returned after a hiatus since 1998. Lebanon had been expected to make its debut appearance but decided to withdraw. For the first time in the history of the contest, Ireland failed to qualify.

The hosts for the event were Maria "Masha" Efrosinina and DJ Pasha, a TV Presenter and Radio DJ.

Finally, it's important to note most countries now choose to sing in English rather than their native language, since rule changes permit the singer to perform in any language they want. It is interesting to note that Spain, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany, who all automatically qualify for the final by right of paying the bulk of the budget of the European Broadcasting Union (Eurovision's parent organisation) all finished in the bottom four positions.

Final Scores

Final Scores
Rank Country Total Points Rank Country Total Points
1 Greece 230 13 Turkey 92
2 Malta 192 14 Bosnia & Herzegovina 79
3 Romania 158 15 Russia 57
4 Israel 154 16 Albania 53
5 Latvia 153 17 FYR Macedonia 52
6 Moldova 148 18 Cyprus 46
7 Serbia & Montenegro 137 19 Sweden 30
8 Switzerland 128 20 Ukraine 30
9 Norway 125 21 Spain 28
10 Denmark 125 22 United Kingdom 18
11 Croatia 115 23 France 11
12 Hungary 97 24 Germany 4