If you watch Love Island – and we're assuming you do as you clicked on this oh so EXCLUSIVE Love Island story – when you recall dumped Islander Ikenna Ekwonna (the gentle giant who took his sweet time wooing Indiyah Polack), you probably go all gooey and mushy inside, just like we do. Honestly, try and name a more perfect, adorable, cuddly, sexy, respectful and considerate specimen of stud that has appeared on Love Island over the last few years.
We'll wait, go on.
Seriously - it's good for our web stats, to be honest.
Ikenna wouldn't hurt a fly and, to be honest, we just want to have a cuddle with him while watching, well, Love Island. Wholesome vibes.
Naturally, we were more than thrilled to catch up with the Love Island hunk in person this week for Closer's Love Island Secrets. Amber Beckford was there too, but we can't be sure, as we were lost in Ikenna's eyes for a good proportion of the interview.
During the chat for our YouTube series, where former Love Island legends spill copious amounts of tea all over our studio floor every week (health and safety hate it), we got chatting to Ikenna about his slow burning relationship with Indiyah on Love Island. The pair were coupled up by the public on day one and stayed together until Ikenna was eventually dumped from the villa (give or take a few crossover days with Dami Hope 'cause: Love Island.
Although the relationship was totally adorable, things progressed slowly (like Charlie Radnedge actually getting from the grass to the girls to perform his striptease SLOWLY), to Indiyah's dismay (as well as most of their fellow Islanders and almost every Love Island fan with a social media account).
Not us though, we thought it was cayute.
Naturally, we wondered whether those pesky Love Island producers made any attempts to get the relationship moving quicker for the show's narrative (again, 'cause: Love Island). Interestingly, Ikenna said, “It wasn’t just producers, it was probably everyone in there that thought I was going too slow with Indiyah".
He continued, "In my head, I was like, ‘On the outside, what would I do?’ and how would I actually take it with a girl? I thought I was going at a good pace."
Ikenna then dropped a bombshell on us (not the Ekin-Su kind), saying, "I dunno, they pressured me a little bit.”
This isn't exactly the first time a Love Island star has talked about producers sticking their noses in a little too hard. In 2019, Molly-Mae Hague revealed to Closer that that producers on Love Island got involved far more than she expected them to, even engineering the tense scene between some of the Islanders when Anton Danyluk gave his number out behind Belle's back.
“And when he told me that, one of the producers came up to me and said, ‘You need to tell Anna [Vakili] about that, make sure you tell Anna that that happened.’
“And I said ‘no, he just made me promise [not to tell anyone].’"
She claims she was told, "'Don’t worry, we won’t show that bit.’ So I told Anna, and I know I got a lot of backlash for being unfaithful to Tommy, but sometimes you have to do things in there that you don’t necessarily want to do, but for the storyline it just makes it work.
“Sometimes things like that happen, and it just wasn’t me. So sometimes I wish I’d stuck up for myself a bit more and said, ‘actually no, I’m not going to do that.’”
Ikenna, if you're reading this, slow and steady ALWAYS wins the race. You do you, boo.