06/05/2017 09:54 BST

‘Masterchef’ Judge John Torode Insists He Has A ‘Solid Friendship’ With Co-Host Gregg Wallace Just Weeks After Claiming They’ve ‘Never Been Friends’

That's quite a turnaround.

John Torode has insisted he has a “solid friendship” with his ‘Masterchef’ co-host Gregg Wallace, just weeks after he said the complete opposite.

As the new series of the BBC One cooking competition kicked off last month, John revealed that when the cameras stopped rolling, the two judges went their separate ways and never hung out with each other.

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John Torode and Gregg Wallace

John told The Mirror: “It’s funny, we’ve never been friends. We’ve not been to each other’s houses.

“If we do go out for a drink, I’ll invariably be at one end of a big old table and he’ll be at the other.”

But now the chef appears to have had a complete change of heart, insisting the pair are in fact, bosom buddies.

Ahead of this year’s ‘Masterchef’ final, John insisted that he had a “great, solid friendship” with Gregg.

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He told The Sun: “I think you can count your friends on one hand – if you are in a hitch and need help, you pull out your phone and think: ‘I really need a hand right now’ and Gregg is one of those people I can call,” says John.

“It’s important to have that. We don’t hang out with each other all the time but that doesn’t mean you don’t have a great, solid friendship.

“We both have busy lives and we work with each other for seven months of the year, which is a long time to be right next to each other.

“I can see the hairs in his ears. I can smell his breath. You can’t have that sort of on-screen relationship without having a proper, true relationship.”

John added that they still enjoy the occasional night out together when they’re not filming.

“We meet up with each other and have a meal probably once a year and it always ends up being a little bit messy,” he says.

“We have a very, very good relationship and get on really well – we’ve worked together for almost 13 years and have known each other for nearly 25.

“There are very few partnerships on TV that have lasted the way ours has. I don’t know the secret to that, but our respect for each other is great.”

The pair met when Gregg supplied vegetables to London restaurant Quaglino’s, where John worked as a chef early in his career.

They later began presenting and judging ‘Masterchef’ when it was revamped by the Beeb in 2005.

‘Masterchef: The Finals’ air Monday 9pm, Wednesday 8pm, Thursday 8pm and Friday 8.30pm on BBC1.

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