A painfully awkward segment on the Today show on Friday has seemingly laid bare tensions and information on Set of Channel Nine's struggling breakfast program.
Shortly before 6am, Deborah Knight apologized to sports presenter Tony Jones after he had berated her for asking if he would bring his dog to the racetrack.
The attempt at 'banter' failed miserably, with the silent conversation leaving no doubt as to how the presenters feel about each other behind the scenes.
Uncomfortable: Today's show host Deborah Knight (second left) apologized to sports presenter Tony Jones (right) for asking if he'd brought his dog to a race track. Pictured with newsreader Tom Steinfort (left) and Georgie Gardner (second right)
"Deb, we're at a racetrack," Tony snapped back. "Probably not a great idea to bring the dog, I wouldn't have thought."
"I thought it might have been good to have Archie there to cheer you up," Deborah answered, trying to salvage the segment.
As newsreader Tom Steinfort ground to speak, Tony cut in: "I'm in a great mood, I'm in a fantastic mood … I just love being here."
Deborah, who seemed genuinely affronted by Tony Sarcasm, replied: 'Okay, well sorry for asking. Never mind. Good on you, TJ. "
Bad mood? Tony Jones snapped at the hosts on multiple occasions during the awkward exchange on Friday morning
Prior to the awkward exchange, Tony had already been involved in an uncomfortable back and forth with Deborah's co-host, Georgie Gardner.
Tony had asked the anchors which Australian dishes they would include on a menu for French tourists, to which Georgie replied: "A kangaroo burger, maybe."
While kangaroo meat is sold in supermarkets across Australia and has been exported to over 55 countries, the answer was with a condescending response.
"Oh, you'd just go and slaughter a kangaroo, would you, Georgie?" Tony said.
Shocked: The hosts in the studio were left red-faced with the uncomfortable exchange, and sat in silence for a second after the show aired
While Georgie argued that kangaroo meat is readily available across the country, TJ abruptly answered: "You can't eat Skippy."
The cringeworthy exchanges come amid rumors the current hosts will be axed from the show in 2020, and will be replaced with former presenter Karl Stevanovic.
The Today show's ratings have been on a steady decline since 2016, with Channel Seven's Sunrise, hosted by Sam Armytage and David Koch, soaring ahead.
The 45-year-old is said to be in discussion with Nine to return to his role to boost ratings next year.
Stefanovic (left with Georgie Gardner) was ousted from the show on December 19, 2018, after serving more than 14 years on the program
Ironically, Stefanovic executives dumped from Today because they believed publicity surrounding his personal life was hurting ratings.
The separated from his wife and the mother of his three children, Cassandra Thorburn, in September 2016.
A few months after the split, he was dating former-model-turned-shoe-designer Jasmine Yarbrough, who is ten years his junior. He married the same month he was let go from the show.
If reports are true, the presenter would lead a new look team with 60 minutes reporter Allison Langdon replacing Georgie and Deb.
Stefanovic (right) – who would reportedly receive a pay cut for the role – is likely to star alongside 60 minutes reporter Allison Langdon (left) for the new lineup
Speaking to Nova FM's Fitzy & Wippa on Friday, Stefanovic confessed he was awarded to get his old job back.
"That's what I keep trying to tell Channel Nine, that's the lucky charm," he said.
"If they want to pad me up and send me in, I'm ready to go in and we'll have a win."
Stefanovic is pictured with wife Jasmine Yarbrough, who married during the same month of his sacking
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