Alex Jones and Jason Manford’s first appearance together on The One Show sofa drew an impressive number of extra viewers.

Monday’s eagerly-anticipated BBC1 show – which featured comedian Whoopi Goldberg among the guests – was watched by an average of 4.5 million viewers and a 23.5 per cent share.

The TV critics seemed to like it – and so did the viewers, helping the teatime programme to beat its 2009 average, which was 4.3 million viewers and a 21.6 per cent share.

Alex’s nerve-wracking debut also proved a bigger draw than that of her predecessor Christine Bleakley’s opening show three years ago.

Christine, who defected to ITV earlier this summer, was watched by 3.4 million (a 19.3 per cent share) when she replaced Myleene Klass on The One Show couch – coincidentally, on the very the same date three years ago: August 16.

Monday’s One Show was also up on the equivalent Monday last year, August 17, which attracted 3.3 million (18.1 per cent).

So, all in all, it was a happy opening night for the new girl.

“We’re over the moon that so many viewers tuned in to watch our first appearance on The One Show last night and hope they all enjoyed it as much as Jason and I did,” said Alex, 32. “We were nervous before the show, of course, but Whoopi really helped by being such a great guest.”