The sizzling secret affair that has been playing over the past few weeks of Married at First Sight Australia finally came to a head last night during an explosive commitment ceremony in which Sam Ball was forced to reveal all about his 'affair' with Ines Basic to his wife Elizabeth Sobinoff.
Couple-swapping has always been a ratings hit in past seasons - who can forget the Dean and Davina affair of last season - and we're told this latest couple swap has been in the works since the beginning of this season.
A series insider reveals, "The producers recognised that Sam was the most handsome groom and that would make him a target for the other wives. At some point in the first couple of weeks of the experiment, they told him they would make a swap work if there was someone he liked."
A second source backs up the arrangement allegation, saying producers held meetings with Sam, 26 – who was matched with Elizabeth Sobinoff – to talk about how the "affair" would play out and how they could spin the best story from it.
"They wanted to make them like Dean [Wells] and Davina [Rankin] from the start," reports the source.
"Sam played along with the plan because he knew it would be the biggest story of the show. They said, 'Look, we know you're not into Liz. Why not give it a go with Ines instead and see where that could lead?' So they basically asked Sam to pretend to like her, while Ines, on the other hand, had no idea it was all for show. She had genuine feelings."
Ines, 28 – who was paired with ex-stripper Bronson Norrish and infamously referred to Sam as "my kind of snack" – quickly became the most hated woman on the show and has since fallen victim to a wave of online abuse that has reportedly driven her into hiding.
A friend of the legal assistant says she's cut herself off from friends and castmates, and is "living like a recluse" in her Brisbane home.
The pal adds, "She's lost about 12kg since filming finished – and she was tiny to begin with. Everyone's really worried about her."
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