Changes are afoot within Nine News presenters in Melbourne and Sydney as Jo Hall scales back her role, to spend more time with family.
The Melbourne weekend presenter will remain with Nine doing news updates and serve as a weekend fill-in.
She will be replaced by Nine News journalist Alicia Gorey, who also reads news on the weekend edition of Today.
That has led to former TEN presenter Deborah Knight being snapped up by Nine to work on Today. Knight was let go by the network when Sandra Sully moved back to the Sydney News bulletin after TEN Late News was axed.
Jo Hall, 53, told the Herald Sun she had 20 years of constant weekend work.
“It’s something you accept as part of the job, but when the contract came up I thought I could do it for a little bit longer but not a lot longer on a permanent basis.
“Imagine working every single weekend when you’ve got children. It’s been a really long time to give that commitment.”
Traditionally Hall had moved to the weeknight bulletin during summer but in 2010 Nine began trialling sports presenter Tony Jones in the anchor chair when Peter Hitchener was off. Jones is again expected to take summer presenting duties from Monday.
“People will talk and speculate,” Hall said.
“People can think and say whatever they want to. I’ve never really fallen victim to gossip and fallen under the radar a bit, and I like it like that.”
She told the newspaper she still has ambitions for the top job.
Meanwhile the Daily Telegraph reports Knight will read news from Friday to Monday as Alicia Gorey replaces Hall.
Knight told the newspaper she did not expect to be leaving TEN.
“Sometimes when you see these things coming you can prepare yourself but I just didn’t,” she said.
“I was disappointed they didn’t see my value after 13 years with TEN, especially after they spent so much money building me up as a (network) brand.”
Despite having to audition for TEN’s Breakfast, Knight will also have co-hosting duties on Weekend Today during summer.
Nine’s director of news Mark Calvert said, “Deb is a great newsreader, great journalist and great person. We love her. TEN’s loss is very much our gain.”
She begins next Friday.