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The competition steps up a gear tonight as knockout week begins. The remaining 12 chefs are given a surprise selection of ingredients and two hours and 15 minutes to create something fabulous out of them.

To further test who has the knowledge and skill to be the next champion, all modern equipment is removed – judges Gregg, Monica and Marcus are making sure there is nowhere to hide for the final dozen. The weakest four must cook again, with two sent home.

Tomorrow the remaining 10 are split into two groups, with the first given two-and-a-half hours to create a three-course dinner at the Royal Society of Medicine and the second a feast at the French Ambassador’s Residence (Thursday). Can the chefs work together?