Love Island’s Jacques O’Neill offered way back into rugby league

Jacques might be back on the pitch soon (Picture: ITV/Getty)

Former Love Island contestant Jacques O’Neill has been offered a way back into rugby league following his stint on the dating show.

Jacques famously walked out of the villa midway through the series, after joining as a bombshell and striking up a romance with Welsh paramedic Paige Thorne.

He had quite the rocky time in the Majorcan villa and left shortly after the return of 2018 troublemaker Adam Collard, with whom Paige is now all loved up.

Jacques’ former rugby coach cast doubt over whether he would return to the sport after appearing on Love Island, since his team, Castleford Tigers, shared a statement when he entered the villa about him being ‘released from his contract.’

But now, it seems Jacques – who played rugby league for Askam ARLFC before signing to Castleford Tigers academy – might be getting back on the pitch.

Cumbria have reached out to the Barrow-born former Castleford hooker, who quit the game earlier this year to take part in the ITV2 reality show but left after 37 days, citing mental health reasons.

Editorial use only Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock (13066073av) Jacques O'Neill 'Good Morning Britain' TV show, London, UK - 04 Aug 2022

Jacques left Love Island midway through due to his mental health (Picture: Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock)

Castleford still retain the 23-year-old’s registration but he has been offered the chance to represent his county against Jamaica in a World Cup warm-up match at Workington on October 7.

Cumbria coach Paul Crarey told BBC Radio Cumbria: ‘Jacques is definitely a Cumbrian and he would be an option if he wanted to play.

‘He would probably bring people in to watch and raise the profile of Cumbrian rugby league.’

Editorial Use Only. No Merchandising. No Commercial Use. Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV/Shutterstock (12993015m) Jacques O'Neill and Paige Thorne chat. 'Love Island' TV show, Series 8, Episode 15, Majorca, Spain - 20 Jun 2022 Is there trouble in paradise for Indiyah and Ikenna? Dami Pulls Indiyah for a chat Amber questions Ekin-Su?s intentions Couples take on today?s 'lip service' challenge Things heat up between Paige and Jacques Islanders learn the public have been voting

He initially struck up a connection with Welsh paramedic Paige Thorne (Picture: ITV/Shutterstock)

After leaving the villa, Jacques spoke about being diagnosed with ADHD and also confirmed he had begun therapy.

However, he was also accused by fellow contestant Remi Lambert of bullying behaviour while inside the villa, and subsequently apologised if his actions had ’caused offence.’

It seems he has not reconnected with Paige, whose romance with gym fiend Adam is well and truly official.

Adam Collard hits back at rumours he's already split with Paige Thorne Instagram|Rex Features

However, Paige is now loved up with 2018 troublemaker and 2022 bombshell Adam Collard (Picture: Instagram)

Their relationship first became strained after it was revealed he kissed Cheyanne Kerr while Paige was away in rival villa Casa Amor.

He spent a number of days attempting to win her back before announcing he was leaving the villa as he needed to ‘get back to himself.’

Before deciding to leave the show, however, Jacques came close to having a physical argument with new arrival Adam.

Thankfully, the situation didn’t escalate then, following Jacques’ departure, Paige and Adam finished the series in fifth place.

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