Amber Gill and Greg O’Shea have been crowned the winners of this year’s Love Island.
It’s a surprising end to the series – as Tommy Fury and Molly-Mae Hague had been the bookies’ favourites to win for several weeks.
Amber is a beauty therapist and model from Newcastle, while Greg is a rugby player from Limerick, Ireland.
Presenter Caroline Flack announced them as the winners of the hugely successful ITV2 show on Monday evening.
Amber, 21, said she could “not believe it”, while 24-year-old Greg described their win as “crazy.”
Congratulating the winning couple, Fury added: “Amber has had a hard time in here, she deserves everything that’s coming to her.”
Greg did not join the show until earlier this month, but Amber has been in the villa since the series began at the start of June.
“It would be fair to say I’ve had quite a journey in the villa this summer. There have been so many highs, but I’ve still had some quite low lows,” Amber said during the final.
“[Greg] came in in the 11th hour; just when I thought there was nothing left for me in the villa, everything changed. He picked me up when I was at my most vulnerable, and helped me rediscover my smile.”
She added: “It’s been absolutely wild… a rollercoaster of emotion.”
‘A win for the underdog’
by Steven McIntosh, Entertainment reporter
Amber is one of just three finalists to have entered the villa on day one. And, as a result, viewers feel they’ve been on a journey with her.
She may have come across as a tough nut to crack in the early days, but she has opened up and shown her more vulnerable side in recent weeks.
No contestant has been through the wringer quite as much as Amber, perhaps most notably in her relationship with Michael, which left her visibly heartbroken.
Therefore, when the loveable Greg entered the villa and made a beeline for her, viewers were just glad to finally see Amber happy.
“Thank you for helping build me back up,” she told Greg during the final. “You’ve always been so sweet and lovely to me, and you’ve managed to bring out my soft side, which not many realised existed.
“You picked me up when I was my most vulnerable, and helped me rediscover my smile.”
Tommy and Molly-Mae might have been the favourites after spending 54 days in the villa as a couple, but when it comes to the British public, never underestimate an underdog.
The winning couple receive £50,000 in prize money – which they will share between them.
In an twist which occurs every year, Greg was given the option to “steal” the prize money in full for himself, before deciding to share it with Amber.
Tommy and Molly-Mae finished in second place, Ovie and India third, and Curtis and Maura fourth.
Amber and Greg’s surprise win went down well with viewers on social media, with some drawing attention to how late Greg joined the series.
“Greg worked for a fortnight, bagged £25K and a beautiful woman in Amber. Definition of Winning!” tweeted Chizzy Akudolu.
“Genuinely a great redemption story. What an impact Greg’s had too. Just a good, good lad,” added Metro’s Jay Jaffa.
“Couldn’t be prouder of us all for voting for the right couple to win #LoveIsland this year,” said Nola Marianna Ojomu. “A lot of madness went down for Amber but we truly righted all those wrongs.”
“Love the fact the poster couple didn’t win #LoveIsland – congrats to Amber and Greg,” added Miles O’Leary.
This series of Love Island, the fifth, has been a huge success for ITV2 – and broke the channel’s all-time ratings record earlier this month.
The show, which is filmed in Majorca, has become a significant money-maker for ITV with its predominantly young and female audience particularly valuable to advertisers.
None of the couples from last year’s series of Love Island are still together. However, earlier series have produced couples who have got married or had children.
For example, Cara De La Hoyde and Nathan Massey, who won the 2016 series, are now married and have a baby son.
There will be twice as much Love Island next year – after ITV announced a second series which will launch this winter.
Read more: www.bbc.co.uk