Another Today show star is leaving the breakfast program—just days after hosts Deborah Knight and Georgie Garnder were axed in favour of Karl Stefanovic and Allison Langdon.
Sports presenter Tony Jones is leaving his role after just 12 months citing an ‘unsustainable workload’. His last day will be on Friday.
“It’s certainly been a wild ride over the past year, but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time working on the Today show,” he told the Herald Sun following news of the departure.
“Juggling those commitments, together with Nine News, Sunday Footy Show and 3AW was not sustainable.”
But despite the show’s very public upheaval over the past week, Tony was adamant his decision to leave was made ‘months ago’, following almost a year of plunging ratings.
“Something had to give. I’ll still be involved with the Today show next year on big Melbourne stories, just not a regular basis,” he said.
The surprising announcement comes less than a week after the latest casting shake-up at the embattled breakfast program.
On Saturday, Georgie and Deborah were unceremoniously axed in favour of 14-year veteran of the gig, Karl, and 60 Minutes reporter Allison, following weeks of speculation.
The announcement came in a statement which saw Karl admit he never expected to return to what he described as ‘the best live job in Australia’ – despite the ‘enormous pressures’ and ‘pitfalls’.
“Going back to the Today show is not something that I thought would come up again,” he said.
“I thought my time was up but then when I was sounded out about it, it got me thinking. It's a big job with enormous pressures and I know only too well some of those pitfalls, but it is also without question the best live job in Australia.”
Today’s radical switch-up earlier this year saw Tom Steinfort take over from Sylvia Jeffreys, Brooke Boney join as entertainment reporter, and Tony handle sport news.
But despite the fresh line up’s initial promise, each has failed to resonate with audiences, reaching a year-long low earlier this month when it pulled in just 155,000 viewers.
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