A FURNESS-born rugby star is set to appear on TV’s biggest dating show this weekend.

Former Dowdales Secondary school pupil Jacques O'Neill, who plays for Super League club Castleford Tigers, is expected to debut on Sunday’s episode of ITV 2 show Love Island.

Clips promoting the new episode showed Gemma Owen- daughter of football legend Michael Owen- saying to fellow contestants: "Oh my god- that's my ex-boyfriend!' as a new mystery man entered the villa.

It is believed the pair were dating within the past 12 months and were together for around a year.

In May, reports in Rugby League Live suggested the 23-year-old could be heading to the Majorca villa in the hopes of finding love.

Read more: Hit ITV dating show 'sign up' former Askam rugby player

Castleford Tigers wished O’Neill luck on his ‘new opportunity’ in a statement released last night (June 10).

“Castleford Tigers can confirm that the club has agreed to release Jacques O’Neill from his contract to allow him to pursue another opportunity,” a spokesman said.

“The Tigers have the first option to sign O’Neill back next year should he wish to return to rugby league.

“Known for a fearless attitude on the field by Castleford supporters, the Cumbrian born 23-year-old is a proud product of the Tigers’ youth system having come through both our scholarship and academy programmes before making his Super League debut.

“Castleford Tigers would like to wish Jacques well with his new opportunity and thank him for his efforts as a Tiger so far.

“The Tigers would also like to say a big thank you to Russells who have sponsored Jacques O’Neill throughout his time at the club.”

O'Neill played junior rugby league for Askam ARLFC before being signed to the Castleford Tigers academy.

He has previously played for the Leigh Centurions and Halifax in the Betfred Championship on loan and dual registration from Castleford.