For years Eddie Mair has been regarded as the nearly-man at the BBC.
He has presided over Radio Four’s news magazine programme, PM, with a sort of murmuring pugnacity while never hiding his desperation to graduate to television.
He does a turn on Newsnight whenever it’s offered, and has recently popped up as a stand-in on The Andrew Marr Show.
Indeed, he has shed considerable weight and affected a trendy new hair-do in a bid to make an impression.
So it came as no surprise last Sunday morning when he described Boris Johnson as ‘a nasty piece of work’ during their interview.
It will have done the Paxman wannabe no harm with his left-wing masters at the corporation.