Sashi Cheliah wins MasterChef Australia 2018

Sashi wins TEN series with the biggest lead over a grand finalist across 10 seasons.

South Australian Prison Officer Sashi Cheliah has won MasterChef Australia 2018.

The 39 year old won the title, $250,000 and a monthly column in Delicious after defeating Ben Borsht with the biggest grand final lead across 10 seasons: 93 points to 77.

Sashi dominated in Round One, a combined starter and main challenge, with Sambal Prawn & Fish Curry dishes, including three perfect 10s from the judges. But Ben’s crab starter lacked texture and he had issues with the fish batter on his main. At the end of the first round Sashi was well ahead with a 16 point lead.

The second round saw guest Heston Blumenthal enter to rock star adoration only to reveal a dastardly “Counting Sheep” dessert with meringue, panna cotta, ice-cream and more floating on white pillows. Former contestants and finalist families were in awe of the imaginative, elegant dish requiring a 4.5hr cook.

While Ben proved strong in round two ultimately it wasn’t enough to make up enough ground -both scored uniform 9s leaving Sashi with a massive win.

Singaporean-born Sashi had also been a series favourite winning two Immunity pins across the series.

MasterChef has been an amazing ride for me. I never thought I would come this far in the competition and to win is icing on the cake. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the judges for their guidance and motivation, which has helped me develop into a better cook, and to Shannon who was a great mentor during the immunity challenges and Semi-Final.

MasterChef has given me the opportunity to work with great chefs from around the world, and I have made great friends that will be cherished for the rest of my life, said Sashi.

“The overwhelming support from my fans and family has made me realise my potential, and it has motivated me to achieve great heights. My food dream is to start an Indian and South East Asian fusion restaurant, serving authentic food. I also want to work with ex-prisoners to provide assistance, rehabilitation and opportunities to obtain employment in the food industry.”

Ben received a $40,000 prize as runner-up while Khanh was awarded $10,000.

“I’ve had such an amazing experience on MasterChef Australia, I’ll remember it for the rest of my life. Throughout the competition I’ve found such a passion for food, especially seafood and can’t wait to see where this new found passion leads me,” said Ben.

“The judges have guided me through thick and thin, and I truly appreciate everything they’ve done for me. My fellow contestants are all such talented, beautiful people that such an experience wouldn’t have been possible without them.”

The series has been a perennial hit for TEN, attracting strong ratings and has been renewed for 2019.

18 Responses

  1. Very happy to Sashi won, although I was hoping Khahn would take it (plus I’ve developed a bit of a crush on him…). Ben’s main was terrible and I don’t know how he even got to the finale. You can only do fish and carrots so many times!

  2. So refreshing to see everyone so happy and enjoying the competition. I am so over all the bitchiness and hatred in reality tv these days. Loved Sashis’ boys cheering him on.

  3. Very happy for Sashi – very well deserved. And am disappointed for Ben that he flumped on the first round but he accepted it with dignity like he always does. Once again, MasterChef Australia has proven to be a shining light of well made, positively engaging television.

  4. It was nice to see Sashi win, his enthusiasm has been infectious throughout the series. Well done. I have a question….given that MC have a history of filming 2 endings, how the hell did they do it with Ben’s first round trainwreck and Sashi’s, well deserved, high scores ? I don’t see how it would be possible.

        1. I thought about that. It would have been indignant to have carried on the pretence and I’m sure the producers would have addressed the attendees on the day to speak about the decision and asked that they maintain discretion regarding what happened until broadcast day.

  5. A fantastic season, better than 2017, you could see how engaged people got with the show. So for a 10th anniversary it was great, having Nigella and Ramsay was also special and indeed at the start.

  6. Good on Sashi, well deserved but I did feel for Ben when he got such low scores. But his dishes were a bit mediocre for a Grand Final. I knew unless Sashi totally stuffed up Heston’s dish he was the winner. He did make a small blunder but was able to rectify it. But I wanted to see them make that pillow. Ha ha That dessert was ridiculous.

    1. Mediocre just for GF…..Ben is a cafe cook ,deep fried fish for masterchef let alone the finale!. He’ll be successful due to this show but an Adam Liaw he ain’t. Sashi I will fly to any of his restaurants to eat at them.

  7. The whole season has really been fantastic. The thing that has struck me the most is the humanity of the show. The support and encouragement that all of the contestants give to one another regardless of any differences they may have (race, gender, sexuality etc) has been wonderful to see. This is a TV show we can be proud to say we produce in this country.

    1. Agree @cazz81

      I was thinking the same thing all series. And it seems the responses to what was the best bit (often the fellow contestants) were genuine.

      Many other shows it is either about winning/bitching or becoming famous.

      I like seeing so many have begun their food dream on the back of MCA.

      Well done Sashi. Very deserving 🙂

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