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MasterChef viewers have lashed out at a guest judge on the show, accusing him of "bullying" fan favourite Sashi Cheliah on Wednesday night's episode.
Monty Koludrovic, the executive chef of Bondi's Icebergs, was leading the remaining four contestants in a dinner service for 30 diners.
Sashi was tasked with cooking a pumpkin ravioli and mushroom broth entree, but Koludrovic quickly lost patience with his flustered pottering.
"You need to go faster, faster, faster," he told the MasterChef favourite. "If you're going to be a big boy and choose ravioli, you've got to make the raviolo – otherwise you do linguine, yeah? Push!"
Icebergs’ Monty Koludrovic (right) with MasterChef’s judges.
He also forced Sashi to apologise to the restaurant's waiters for the late service.
"You got anything to say to the waiters? How about, 'Sorry I'm so late'? C'mon, tell them," Koludrovic told Sashi as he plated his dishes.
"I'm sorry for the delay," Sashi muttered.
"We're all sorry for the delay, aren't we?" replied Koludrovic.
Fan favourite Sashi Cheliah.
On social media, viewers slammed the chef for his "condescending" and "bullying" behaviour.
"Absolutely horrified at the way Monty has spoken to Sashi," one viral comment read. "He was treated like a child and spoken to so condescendingly when the others were not treated in the same way."
"There's a difference between constructive criticism and blatant disrespect," another commenter posted.
Koludrovic took to Instagram to respond to one viewer who accused him of racism.
"I'm not sure why it seems racist? Sashi struggled with his pasta more than the other cooks struggled with their dishes… I needed to help him get there," he wrote.
"I helped all of these amateur cooks in the same way. It was four hours of service cut down for TV. I'm not sure why you would think I was being racist."
Ten declined to comment on the controversy. The episode drew in 906,000 viewers across the five major cities, to easily win its timeslot for the network.
The series enters its final week on Sunday, ahead of Tuesday's grand finale led by chef Heston Blumenthal.
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