After scoring third place in this year’s Love Island with boyfriend Curtis Pritchard, Maura Higgins has been confirmed as a contestant for the latest series of Dancing on Ice.
However, involvement in the show spelt the end for previous ex-Islanders Wes Nelson and Megan Barton-Hanson’s relationship, when Megan allegedly felt threatened by Wes’s skating partner and became jealous of the two last year.
It is common for participants to strike up a romance with their partners on and off the ice, with previous couples including Hollyoaks actress Jennifer Metcalfe and her partner, as well as footballer David Seaman and his skating partner.
Curtis has laughed off hints that he and Maura could split as a result of a similar love affair, claiming ‘It's only a curse if you believe in it. I'm sure Maura will be fine...Fingers crossed!’
The couple finally got together towards the end of Love Island after Curtis ditched ‘half-girlfriend’ Amy Hart, claiming that he felt there was something missing. After it became clear that there was chemistry between Maura and Curtis, Amy left the show in order to protect herself from further heartbreak.
After her exit, the relationship between Maura and Curtis quickly developed, culminating in the two placing third in the series, behind runners-up Tommy Fury and Molly-Mae Hague and winners Amber Gill and Greg O’Shea.
Since leaving the villa, both Maura and Curtis have been offered various opportunities in TV, with Curtis set to star as a guest judge on the upcoming RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, which starts this week. Amy also managed to gain a spot as a panellist on Loose Women, posting on Instagram that she ‘cried’ after receiving the call to appear on the show. Maura also made several appearances on This Morning and was said to be thrilled about her slot.
However Maura’s appearance on Dancing on Ice allegedly caused controversy when it was revealed that her Love Island co-star Amber Gill had also been in the running to appear on the show. Rumours had circulated of bad blood between the two, which Amber dispelled in a statement last week, after she secured a whopping £1,000,000 deal with clothing company Miss Pap.
This came in the wake of Amber’s break-up with Greg, which was revealed during an episode of the ‘Late Late Show’ on which the two were expected to appear on as a couple. Amber failed to appear alongside Greg for the show, while reports of Maura cosying up to Greg after the filming were slammed by the ex-ring girl as ‘ridiculous’.
Despite the drama, Curtis remains unconcerned about his future with Maura, stating that long distance has only made the pair’s relationship grow stronger, as he stays in the UK for work commitments while Maura has returned to Ireland. At the recent launch of his Debenhams fashion range he was confident that ‘absence often makes the heart go fonder.’