Summer of love | 

Public play matchmaker on Love Island and bombshell Davide shocks the villa

Just as the new pairings are announced, a new boy arrives in the villa to shake things up.
The eighth series of popular ITV2 dating show Love Island launches on June 6 (ITV plc/PA)

The eighth series of popular ITV2 dating show Love Island launches on June 6 (ITV plc/PA)

Kerri-Ann Roper, PA Entertainment Editor and Edel Hughes

The new crop of Love Island contestants will find out who they are coupled up with as the new series kicks off and the villa is rocked by the first bombshell.

The eighth series of the popular Virgin Media dating show launches on June 6 at a new location in Mallorca, with Laura Whitmore returning as host.

In a clip released today, the Irish presenter is seen re-wearing a red waistcoat with heart-shaped cut-out which she wore in a previous finale as part of a suit.

Bray native Laura first wore this Joshua Kane outfit with a matching jacket and trousers last year but added a new twist by ditching the jacket and turning the trousers into shorts.

Love Island is embracing a more sustainable image this year by ditching fast fashion sponsors and partnering with eBay instead.

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This year the first coupling of the series will be decided by viewers, unbeknown to the contestants.

The new line-up includes England footballer Michael Owen’s daughter Gemma and dancer Tasha Ghouri, who has a cochlear implant and is the show’s first deaf contestant.

Monday night’s launch episode will see the girls – Paige, Indiyah, Amber, Gemma and Tasha – speaking to Whitmore around the fire pit, as she says to Gemma: “Talk to me about the type of guy you’re looking for.”

The 19-year-old international dressage rider and business owner tells Whitmore: “I’m looking for a guy that is really family-orientated – that is so important. Good morals.”

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As the girls line up in front of the villa’s pool ahead of meeting the other contestants – Dami, Liam, Ikenna, Andrew and Luca – Whitmore says: “Well, girls, it’s time to couple up. There is something I haven’t told you yet – things are a little different this year.

“You thought you’d all be stepping forward for the boys you fancy the most. However, this is Love Island and you never know what to expect.

“For the first time ever, we asked the public to play Cupid and pick the boy they thought you should couple up with.”

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After being paired up, the islanders are in for another shock as the first bombshell contestant – Davide – makes his entrance.

Indiyah, 23, a hotel waitress from London, says in the Beach Hut: “When I saw him, I was very confused because I had no warning but he is very good looking!”

The other girls also give their opinion on the new contestant with comments ranging from ‘Hot. Sexy. Hercules’ to Paige, 24, a paramedic from Swansea, saying: “I’m done. I’m ready to get married. I’m ready to have babies.”

The Love Islanders play a game of dares shortly after Davide’s arrival, which sees him doing a striptease.

After the game, Davide gets a text saying that in “24 hours you will couple up with a girl of your choice, leaving one boy single and vulnerable #italiansnack #ciaobella”.

Last year’s series saw Millie Court and Liam Reardon crowned winners.


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