A mere seven points separated Poh Ling Yeow and Julie Goodwin in the first ever MasterChef Australia finale in 2009.
Although Julie took out the win, Poh has gone on to be a successful cook, writer and television presenter. However, those seven points have still lingered for the last 11 years, and the Adelaide cook is back for another chance at the top spot.
"It's game on!" Poh, 47, says with a laugh. "I'm thrilled to be back. It's a nice feeling. It's a show that's given me so much in the past 10 years and played such a significant part in giving me incredible opportunities in the last decade."
While being crowned the winner of season 12 would be nice, it's not the driving force for Poh's return.
"I'm not actually ambitious by nature, but I'm very greedy for life experience," she says. "I love variety and challenging myself, so that's what drives me.
"Much of this is just being able to cook the dishes I never got to cook in the first season. That was the thing I mourned the most when I left. It wasn't a loss of face or that I didn't win."
WATCH BELOW: Julie Goodwin beats Poh Ling Yeow in MasterChef Australia 2009. Post continues after video...
There's no question MasterChef Australia has evolved since season one, and Poh is excited about going head-to-head with other MasterChef greats such as Reynold Poernomo, Hayden Quinn and Ben Milbourne having refined her skills.
"I thrive on that, and feel I have something to offer that I didn't back then, which is maturity," she says.
"Now, I have a very strong sense of self and how I want to cook in the competition. And if I go out on that, I'm cool with it."
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Australian Women's WeeklyJun 30, 2022