Woman’s Day (Australia)


Constant changes have left the breakfast television veteran second-guessing himself


He’s spent more than 30 years at the forefront of morning TV, and when it comes to brekkie shows, Richard “Dickie” Wilkins is the undisputed king. But amid widespread reports of a Today shake-up, Woman’s Day’s sources at Nine confess he’s quietly worried about his future at the network.

“Dickie’s smart and can read a room better than anyone, and he’s rightly worried he’s about to get a tap on the shoulder,” the insider exclusivel­y reveals.

“He’s seen firsthand the upheaval at Nine, and he’s genuinely concerned about his future after all the crazy changes at Today, including the weekend line-up, where he used to be front and centre.”

For the 68-year-old New Zealand-born Aussie, who has graced our small screens for almost four decades, it’s been a hard pill to swallow after being moved aside to make way for Nine’s newest star, Brooke Boney, 35.


“Dickie has copped it on the chin since he was replaced Brooke,” says the insider, but hints that when she was recently promoted to newsreader as well as entertainm­ent reporter, pushing Alex Cullen into a smaller sports role, “everyone, including Dickie, were wondering just who was making the decisions”.

Tensions in the Nine camp were reportedly at an all-time high last week after Weekend Today’s much-loved co-host Belinda Russell abruptly announced she was leaving, effective immediatel­y.

“There’s been plenty of tongues wagging around her replacemen­t, it could be Jayne Azzopardi, or the little-known Melbourneb­ased sports reporter Clint Stanaway,” the source continues. “Belinda was shattered, and by all reports, she will be sorely missed by her team. Meanwhile, Jayne’s made no secret she has her sights on Sarah Abo’s job alongside Karl if that doesn’t work out.”

One insider at Nine, speaking under the promise of anonymity, says the perfect way to sum up the current shake-up is “worse than shifting the deckchairs on the Titanic – this is more like throwing your biggest talents overboard without a lifejacket”!

‘He’s copped it on the chin since he was replaced by Brooke’

While Dickie remains an important part of the Today team, sources concede that having top-tier talent like himself “secondgues­s” what’s going on is not a healthy position to be in.

“Dickie should just take the golden handshake and go and write his memoirs – oh, what a read that will be,” laughs the insider.

 ?? ?? Richard has increasing­ly found himself taking a back seat.
Richard has increasing­ly found himself taking a back seat.
 ?? ??
 ?? ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia