Anne Robinson put in an appearance on Piers Morgan’s TalkTV show on Thursday and it didn’t take long for the host to ask about the rumored behind-the-scenes tensions with Rachel Riley on Countdown.
Ever since Anne started presenting the Channel 4 show, which she recently stepped down from, there have been persistent rumors of a rift between herself and the show’s resident maths expert.
Despite both of them playing down the rumors during Anne’s year-long tenure as the show’s host, the former Weakest Link presenter didn’t exactly do much to dispel the stories when she was asked by Piers about her relationship with Rachel.
“No, I think Susie Dent is great,” Anne replied.
She then added: “Erm… Rachel Riley is completely brilliant at the maths.”
Anne then went on to explain that it was “important” that Rachel’s microphone was switched off before they started recording each show.
“I didn’t not get on,” she said. “But some performers like a lot of noise around them before they go on air and others like me who are trying to get the contestants to remember what their hobbies are would like some quiet while she’s doing that.
“It was important to me we took her mic off.”
Earlier this month, the veteran presenter described press reports that she doesn’t get on with Rachel as “nonsense” but admitted they’re not especially close.
“I’m not saying I would go on holiday with Rachel Riley, but she is brilliant,” Anne told the Daily Mail.
“Absolutely honestly, I do admire her – she is really, really good at what she does, as is Susie Dent.”
“Look, Rachel has just come back from having a baby and she is standing throughout and faultless, whereas I get to sit down,” she continued.
“She is noisy, yes she and Susie both are – they are a formidable pair those two. But there isn’t a question of my going because of a rift, that’s nonsense.”
Rachel has previously admitted that Anne was “not the cuddliest person in the world” amid reports of behind-the-scenes feuding, but played down rumors of any on-set tension.
“It’s just a different show now, she’s making it her own,” Rachel said last year.
“She’s getting some stuff out of the contestants – sometimes it’s barbed, sometimes it’s funny, it’s just got a different flavour.”
Anne joined the long-running letters and numbers quiz show last year, becoming its sixth presenter and the first woman to take on presenting duties.
She took over from The Apprentice’s Nick Hewer following his 10 year run at the helm.
Anne, who has fronted 265 episodes, revealed she had already “stayed longer than I signed up for.”
She will continue to appear in shows until the summer. Channel 4 confirmed a new host will be announced soon.
Piers Morgan Uncensored airs on TalkTV, 8pm Monday-Friday.