Second-place for Cyprus in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest was a fantastic achievement for our tiny nation and the best ever result since 1981, which was Cyprus’ debut in the contest.

The world’s longest-running TV music competition saw Netta from Israel win with the song ‘Toy’, written and composed by Doron Medalie and Stav Beger. Israel’s entry received 529 points, followed by runner-up Cyprus with 436 points. The Cypriot tune was the bookies’ favourites in Eurovision week when Eleni’s rehearsals impressed on-lookers at the Altice Arena. All of a sudden, Cyprus was dominating the global networks with the spotlight on the island immensely helping it in all sorts of ways.

Eleni Foureira set the Eurovision scoreboard ablaze with the up-tempo song ‘Fuego’ managing Top 5 position with the jurors. It was a catchy track with an ethnic edge that swirled with clarinet riffs.

She received the full 12-points by jurors in Spain, Greece, Ireland, Belarus, Malta, and Sweden, with televoting 12-points from Armenia, Bulgaria and… Greece. The UK’s phone-vote gave the Cypriot tune 8 points. With such a robust British Cypriot community it was little wonder that Cyprus received strong televoting support in both the semi-final and final.

The voting had us at the edge of our seats and was very intense. It “went to the wire” with jurors ranking Israel third overall in the public’s opinion, and Cyprus fifth; the Top two favourites.

Eleni was very gracious, humbled and upbeat about the result, who said, “I am so happy, thank you so much.  Being second in Eurovision is like you win… This is the best position Cyprus ever had in the history of Eurovision. I feel like a winner.”

On the night, Eleni was awarded ‘Best Artistic Performance‘ in the Marcel Bezençon Awards. The award winners are announced only hours before the Eurovision live grand final.

The track, “Fuego”, released in March, stormed into the LGR playlist going straight to number one on the London Greek Radio Chart. Eleni’s back-catalogue of infectious hits has definitely made her one of the most prominent artists on the station’s track-listings.

The CyBC had announced Eleni as the Cypriot representative in February this year internally selecting the Greek pop singer. The tune was composed for the competition by Alex Papaconstantinou or Alex P, a Greek-Swedish producer. He collaborates on the tune with Geraldo Sandell, Viktor Svensson, Anderz Wrethov and Didrick.

The CyBC chiefs can feel justified in their selection of Eleni; it was a winning-package, a credible artist, with a current, effective pop song and one that showed off her incredible stage skills.

LGR acknowledge the work of the Cypriot delegation’s Evi Papamichael and all of their team; Alex Papaconstantinou, Panik Records, Jean Sacha-Baptiste and everyone else associated with this amazing result.

Article written by Tony Neophytou