Maryland: Twelve-year-old Indian-American Ananya Vinay, who lives in Fresno, California, has been declared the winner of the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee.
The event was held in the Oxon Hill area of Maryland, according to reports.
Ananya seized every opportunity and eventually got the best of her steely 14-year-old eighth-grader from Edmond, Oklahoma opponent, Rohan Rajeev, to win the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee on Thursday.
During the contest, Ananya showed no emotion and rarely smiled. When the contest was over, she consoled runner-up Rohan, who was in tears after duelling for nearly 20 rounds.
Ananya described her win as a dream come true. She won USD 40,000 in cash and prizes for her effort.
Her victory was all the more special, as it was the first time since 2013 that a sole champion had been declared after three straight years of ties.
Ananya is the 13th consecutive Indian-American to win the bee and the 18th of the past 22 winners with Indian heritage, a run that began in 1999 with Nupur Lala’s victory.