Hayley Holt's Breakfast co-host has admitted "packing a little bit of a sad" when he found out she was joining the show.

The upbeat presenter from Sports Cafe and Crowd Goes Wild today took over from Hilary Barry on the TVNZ 1 morning news show, co-hosting alongside Jack Tame.

The build-up to her first stint on the show hasn't all been smooth sailing, with one critic calling out the show for casting to "type".

Holt also admitted she'd attended three Alcoholic Anonymous meetings in the past week "to keep myself very sane".

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Today's first show back in the new year kicked off without a hitch, until Tame revealed weather presenter Matty McLean had had a mini-meltdown over the show's changes.

"This is our first show of 2018 - new year, new show, new co-host. Hayley Holt, welcome aboard," said Tame, before dropping McLean in it.

"Matty wasn't thrilled about some changes we've had on Breakfast," Tame revealed. "When Matty found out you were coming on the show, he packed a little bit of a sad.

"It was just a little one. You know what he said to me? 'I'm the blonde bombshell'."

McLean quickly countered, saying it was "a joke".

Holt didn't waste any time replying: "You can be the princess if you like."

Holt wasn't the only change seen on Breakfast this morning, with a new set that included new graphics and a cosy, round glass presenting desk.

Hayley Holt and Jack Tame on the first Breakfast show of the year. Photo/TVNZ
Hayley Holt and Jack Tame on the first Breakfast show of the year. Photo/TVNZ

Down the road at The AM Show, which returned earlier than Breakfast this year to claims they were trying to poach some of TVNZ's morning audience, they only had nice words for their competitors.

Amanda Gillies, Mark Richardson and Duncan Garner posed for an Instagram photo and asked their Breakfast counterparts if they were keen for "a joint maccas run?"

Read more: TVNZ's specific 'type' of host and why it's an issue