fi·​nal·​ist | \ ˈfī-nə-list How to pronounce finalist (audio) \

Definition of finalist

: a contestant in a competition finals

Examples of finalist in a Sentence

They interviewed all of the finalists before making a decision. a finalist in the tennis tournament
Recent Examples on the Web Around the same time, Penczarski was also a finalist in a second superintendent search. cleveland, "Penczarski seeks to build on Chagrin Falls Schools’ strong foundation as next superintendent," 22 Apr. 2021 Sellers was a head coach finalist in 2016 along with Marshall and Jay Young., "Source: Former Central Connecticut player Patrick Sellers among finalists for men’s basketball head coaching job," 16 Apr. 2021 Proctor, 51, is an educator and trained pilot who was a finalist in NASA's 2009 astronaut class. Emre Kelly, USA TODAY, "Meet the final two crew members selected on SpaceX's all-civilian mission to orbit Earth," 30 Mar. 2021 The Scripps Howard Awards competition announced Tuesday that The Oregonian/OregonLive’s photography entry was a finalist in the Excellence in Visual Journalism category. oregonlive, "The Oregonian/OregonLive named Scripps Howard Award finalist for 2020 protest photos," 10 Mar. 2021 Holtmeier is a three-time finalist in our competition, with Limoncello Kisses in 2017, Coffee and Irish-Cream Dreams in 2018 and Italian Cream Cake Cookies in 2019. Rick Nelson, Star Tribune, "We have a winner! Here are the best recipes of the 2020 Star Tribune Holiday Cookie Contest," 3 Dec. 2020 Miracle is ranked No. 5 in the world at 62K and is a finalist in her weight class for the Olympic trials. Jeff Metcalfe, The Arizona Republic, "Zahid Valencia returns to wrestling Saturday vs. 2012 Olympic champion," 14 Nov. 2020 King Dough was a finalist in the IndyStar 2020 Best Things community choice awards for the local pizza category. Cheryl V. Jackson, The Indianapolis Star, "King Dough pizzeria closes after employee tests positive for COVID-19," 7 Nov. 2020 Chicago Cubs right-hander Yu Darvish is a finalist in the NL. Los Angeles Times, "Mookie Betts a finalist for NL MVP; Mike Trout excluded as an AL finalist," 2 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'finalist.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of finalist

1898, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for finalist

final entry 1 + -ist entry 1

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Time Traveler for finalist

Time Traveler

The first known use of finalist was in 1898

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Statistics for finalist

Last Updated

5 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Finalist.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of finalist

: a person who competes in the last part of a competition

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Nglish: Translation of finalist for Spanish Speakers

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