Rykard Jenkins has spoken out about his decision to LEAVE the Love Island 2016 villa.
Why did you decide to leave the show?
I decided to leave the villa because at that moment I was developing a really nice relationship with Rachel and watching her walk away, I knew I had the power to stay or go. No one was holding me to staying in the competition, so I decided I wanted to go after Rachel as that is who I wanted to be with. I didn’t want to meet anyone new and I wasn’t there for the prize money. I didn’t anticipate Rachel leaving in advance but when it came to it I had made up my mind – if Rachel left the villa, I was going as well.
Do you have any regrets about leaving?
Not at all - the show is about couples and getting to know who you’re with and developing your relationship with your partner. Rachel getting dumped from the island was a clear sign I had to go with her.
Even though you’ve left early do you think you’ve come out having found what you went in there to find?
100% - what I wanted was to test my character, and I definitely had to handle a lot of difficult situations in there. I got to know complete strangers and they all ended up really caring about me and my feelings. Especially Rachel - she’s definitely worth the risk of leaving.
Was the experience what you expected it to be?
Yes and no – everything you see in regards to feelings and relationships is very real, and I didn’t expect it to be quite as intense and emotional. It’s probably harder than you think it would be as on the outside world you have longer to think about things but in the villa you have to make important decisions very quickly. You are constantly being put on the spot. That’s the nature of the game.
Was there a part of you that was dreading Rachel finding out about Olivia?
I honestly didn’t think it would be as big a deal as it was. I’m glad it has been brought up and I’m pleased it’s out in the open.
Did you expect the Olivia situation to cause the furore it did on the outside?
What would you do differently if you had your time in the villa all over again?
Not at all – it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.
In spite of everything that’s happened do you think you and Olivia will still be able to be friends on the outside?
Of course as I have nothing bad to say about her – I hope she finds someone in there that makes her happy. I think she will.
If the two of you could go back into the villa together, would you?
I think we would together but only to see everyone. I don’t know if it would be a good idea for us to be part of the game again as a couple as it would inevitably put a strain on our relationship.
There has been a lot of talk of game playing – who do you think is playing the biggest game?
Everyone has to play the game when they need to – when it’s your turn to play, you play. I would say the people who were left single had to play the biggest game because they are in a tougher position – so I would say Dan, Javi, Adam, Zara and Olivia.
What do you think the next steps will be for you and Rachel?
We’re going back to London and we’re going to go on a few dates and have fun. We want to enjoy getting to know each other away from the cameras. It will be nice to have a bit of privacy.
Love Island continues nightly on ITV2 at 9PM.