Love Island kicked off the weeklong countdown to the new series when it revealed the first contestant on Monday - lawyer Sharon Gaffka.

"It's been a bit of a running joke between my friendship group for a while that I should apply, probably because I'm the most outrageous one out of the group," said the 25-year-old public servant and former Miss International UK.

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"But also, because of Covid and the lockdown, I'm the only single one in my friendship group. They're either married or planning on getting married. I don't want to be the only one in the group chat that is single anymore!"

On the subject of romance, she said: "I have this thing where if something doesn't work out with one person, I'll try and go for the other extreme to see if that works out.

"I tend to date someone who is taller than me, even though my last long-term partner, he was actually someone who was shorter than me. I'm quite an intellectual person, so I want someone who can kind of match that."

Joining Gaffka in the villa in Mallorca will be 24-year-old events host Aaron Francis.

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"In my job you meet a lot of famous people," he said. "Unless you're Beyoncé, I'm not really interested."

"I've been single for about six or seven months and the dating world at the moment is a little bit off," he continued.

"Everyone's wearing masks. You can't really see anyone which makes dating a lot harder. I do prefer relationships than dating."

"I need someone that is passionate about what they are doing - from scientist to anything - you can tell when someone is speaking about something and they are actually smiling while they are talking," he explained. "I love that.

"I don't like when people are doing a job just to make money and then they kind of just live for the weekend. Especially because I work on the weekends."

Marketing undergraduate Liberty Poole, teacher Hugo Hammond, influencer Shannon Singh, engineer Jake Cornish and fashion blogger Kaz Kamwi were later announced as part of the line-up over the course of Monday morning.

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On Monday afternoon, labourer Brad McClelland, marketing executive Chloe Burrows and semi-professional footballer Toby Aromolaran became the eighth, ninth and tenth contestants, respectively.

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The final contestant to be announced was estate agent Faye Winter.

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The Laura Whitmore-hosted show returns to ITV2 and Virgin Media One next Monday, 28 June.

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