James Martin and Anita Rani to host This Morning

The duo will take over on Fridays during the summer

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It seems former Saturday Kitchen host James Martin couldn’t resist the lure of live TV for long – he’ll be joining Anita Rani as the new presenting duo of ITV’s This Morning on Fridays during the summer.

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Kicking off their stint this Friday (22nd July), the pair will chat to Mrs Brown’s Boys creator and star Brendan O’Carroll, while Martin will be getting back to his cookery roots with two dishes based on produce from his own veg patch.

Already in the can, meanwhile – and set to air the following Friday – is Martin’s interview with Hollywood heavyweights Matt Damon and Alicia Vikander.

“It’s such a privilege to be asked back to do it again, I have a great time there,” said Martin. But he admitted that even with ten years experience on the BBC1 cooking show he left earlier this year, live TV can still be daunting, calling This Morning “one of the toughest gigs in television”.

“It can be nerve wracking at times because you’re always a little unsure about what could happen next! I can handle the food items and talk about that no problem, but to go from such light and shade topics… it’s one of the toughest gigs in television without a shadow of a doubt and you realise what pros they are that do this job. But I’ll do my best, as that’s all I’ve done for the last twenty years!”

Rani, meanwhile, admitted she had spent “many hours of my life – certainly when I was a student… watching this daytime TV institution”.

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“I’m so excited to be joining the fantastic team at This Morning,” she said. “What a brilliant way to spend Fridays over the summer.”