With the final set to air tonight, many fans are asking who's the favourite to win MasterChef series 17.
This year's show has been a real rollercoaster, with many viewers agreeing that the standard is better than ever.
Now, with Alexina, Tom and Mike set to go head to head in a final cook-off, fans will soon find out who is taking home the trophy.
Who's the favourite to win MasterChef?
Given the calibre of this year's competition, the final is clearly going to be a closely fought affair. To reflect this, the betting odds between the top three is razor-thin, with bookies in disagreement over who is actually in pole-position.
For example, speaking exclusively to Twisted, William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams said, "We think Alexina is the one to beat, she has consistently delivered when she needed to and she is our favourite.”
Although the company do not actually take bets as the show is pre-recorded, Adams revealed that the William Hill experts give Alexina odds of 8/11, Tom 2/1 and Mike 4/1.
Ladbrokes are similarly circumspect, with Alexina the favourite at Evens. They rate Tom's chances as 7/4 and Mike's at 9/2. As Alex Apati of Ladbrokes explained to Twisted:
"All three finalists have a solid chance of going all the way on this year's MasterChef; there's not a rank outsider as things stand, but if the latest odds are anything to go by then Alexina is definitely the one to beat."
While the competition may be close, the bookies seem to be in unanimous agreement over who's the one to watch.
Who are the MasterChef final three?
Over the last several weeks, 40 would-be winners have been whittled down to just three. After cooking for some of the country's top critics and chefs, the finalists have shown themselves to be genuine talents.
READ MORE: Behind The Scenes Of MasterChef 2021
However, despite their success, it hasn't all been plain sailing for the finalists. Here's how they got to the last episode.
Alexina has been consistently brilliant throughout this year's competition, impressing the judges with both sweet and savoury dishes.
Her incredible range of influences has won particular praise, with both John Torode and Gregg Wallace heaping praise on her final four duck dish.
READ MORE: Who won MasterChef 2020?
While she has certainly been one of the standouts, it hasn't all been straightforward. For instance, Marcus Wareing found her jerk pork fillet to be too spicy, nearly costing her in the semi-final.
However, as the bookies have made clear, she is definitely leading the pack in 2021.
During the competition, Tom has consistently showcased an incredible talent for combining Asian flavours with Western technique.
He has shown a great command of Thai and Japanese cookery, as well as an incredible eye for presentation. In Monday's episode, for instance, judge John Torode mused that he couldn't decide whether to eat or frame Tom's dessert.
But despite his strength throughout the competition, Tom has made a few errors. For instance, John Torode questioned his recent short-rib noodle dish, and Michel Roux Jr highlighted his lack of fundamental French cooking skills.
Nonetheless, as his competition to date shows, Tom is more than capable of cooking with the best of them.
Mike's real strength in this year's competition has been his meat cookery. The sales executive has showcased his skills with a number of impressive dishes, including roast duck, venison and partridge.
However, although there have also been some stand out moments, Mike has also had some setbacks. John Torode in particular has frequently criticised him for putting too much on a plate at once.
Mike also struggled slightly in the Le Gavroche kitchen, where he attempted his first dessert under the fierce gaze of Michel Roux Jr.
Still, despite his occasional difficulties, there's no doubt that Mike is more than capable of delivering when the chips are down.
Who is the most successful MasterChef winner?
Over the course of 17 seasons, MasterChef has spawned some incredible cooking careers.
Previous winners, such as Simon Wood and Dhruv Baker, have gone on to open extremely successful restaurants. Others, such as Stephen Wallis, have established themselves as leading food writers and voices in the industry.
The most successful MasterChef winner ever, however, is probably season one's Thomasina Miers. The show's first ever champion not only went on to present several popular television programmes, but she also founded the Mexican chain Wahaca.
Although Miers is no longer the majority shareholder in the business, founding such an established brand clearly makes her a real MasterChef success story.
Will there be a MasterChef 2022?
Although the pandemic threw plenty of popular TV shows into disarray, all the signs indicate that MasterChef will be returning in 2022.
In fact, eager competitors can even begin the application process now on the official MasterChef website.
Although it's unclear when the next series of the competition will take place, series 18 is definitely on the cards. We'll keep you posted as soon as we know more.