LOVE Island broadcaster ITV has angrily hit back at claims Jacques O’Neill was forced to appear on Aftersun.
The rugby player was interviewed by Laura Whitmore on last week’s episode of the spin-off show.
He had said before tearfully quitting the villa that he wanted them to be a couple once the series had ended.
A source had claimed Jacques was unhappy about appearing after being left “distraught” by what happened with Paige.
They told the Mail he felt he had no choice saying it was in his contract, adding: “‘Jacques kept saying he wasn’t mentally well enough.
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“It was quite obvious that was the case, especially when you read what he said after he came out of the villa.”
However, ITV rejected Jacques was pressured saying it was “genuinely committed to making sure the Islanders have a positive experience on the show”.
They added that producers would “respect an Islander’s decision if they didn’t want to participate and we would never force someone to take part in the programme”.
Jacques appeared on Love Island: Aftersun, which is not filmed at the villa but back in the UK, on Sunday.
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He began by sitting in the audience as the latest goings-on in the villa – including Adam’s flirtation with Paige – were discussed.
Host Laura asked him: “How is it seeing Paige continue her journey in there?”
He replied: “Listen, I haven’t really watched, you know. But before I said crack on, just like I did in Casa.
“She needs to explore like I did. Before, I said You do what you need to do and she’s doing that.”
Asked if he still hoped for them to be a couple after the show he added: “We had a good connection and we really get on.
“I did see things on the outside working between us. Like I say she’s doing what she needs to do.”
Love Island returns to ITV2 tonight at 9pm.
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