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Great British Bake Off viewers very divided as winner crowned in series finale – here's why

Matty was crowned the 2023 winner

Bake Off 2023 finalists Matty, Josh and Dan with judges and hosts
Nicky Morris
Nicky MorrisTV and film writer
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It wouldn't be a Great British Bake Off finale without a bit of controversy, would it? Viewers who tuned into Tuesday night's final were left divided over the results after Matty was crowned this year's winner.

The tense episode saw the three finalists tasked with baking eight eclairs for their Signature Challenge, lardy cake slices for the Technical, and a tiered celebration cake for the Showstopper.

WATCH: Meet the 2023 Great British Bake Off contestants

While Matty got off to a wobbly start, with Paul Hollywood describing the cherries on top of his eclairs as "ridiculous", his slightly wonky Showstopper was hailed as "absolutely delicious" by Prue Leith

At the end of the episode, Matty was crowned the winner, beating runners-up Dan and Josh to the title. 

Bake Off winner Matty© Channel 4
Matty was crowned the 2023 winner

The 28-year-old teacher was lost for words. "I don't know what to say, everyone said 'you should go on Bake Off' and I thought it was a throwaway comment and never really listened to it," he said in response to his win. "There have been so many ups and so many downs. So many times when I had to be pulled through by the people closest to me. I cannot imagine I have been that much fun to live within the last 10 weeks. I am happy for them as much as I am for me. It still doesn't feel real."

While many viewers were overjoyed to see Matty named this year's champion, others were a little disappointed that Josh didn't win the coveted title. 

Taking to the social media platform X, one person wrote: "OMG #GBBO! What the hell?! Josh was robbed! Matty was great but Josh was CLEARLY the best of that trio!" while another added: "Think Josh was robbed there #GBBO."

Bake Off 2023 finalists Matty, Josh and Dan© Channel 4
Bake Off 2023 finalists Josh, Dan and Matty

A third person penned: "I loved Matty but I just think Josh was definitely the better baker and he was robbed in the end."

Other fans, however, praised Matty for his impressive win. One person tweeted: "So so happy for Matty, he got better and better each week, and I was drooling at his chocolate cake! Brilliant result and well done to Dan and Josh too. Great series!" while another added: "Yes Matty!! SO happy he won. What a lovely guy."

READ: How Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively broke the cardinal rule of Great British Bake Off

MORE: Meet Bake Off star Noel Fielding's partner Lliana Bird

This isn't the first time fans have been divided over the Bake Off final – and we're sure it won't be the last!

Bake Off finalist Josh © Channel 4
Some fans felt Josh should have won

Viewers may recall the 2018 series, which saw Rahul Mandal crowned the winner, beating fellow finalists Ruby Bhogal and Kim-Joy Hewlett.

While many fans celebrated Rahul's win, others claimed that the result was a "fix" and felt Kim-Joy, who came first in the technical, should have been victorious. 

bake off 7© Photo: Getty Images
Rahul Mandal won the 2018 series

Then in 2022, there was a different kind of controversy as fans blasted the final technical challenge as unfair. The amateur bakers, Sandro Farmhouse, Syabira Yusoff and Abdul Rehman Sharif, were tasked with making vegetarian gelatin without any instructions, and many viewers felt that this was a tough ask. Despite the tricky challenge, Syabira emerged victorious and lifted the coveted trophy.

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