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Kara Tointon and her Russian hunk begin passionate Christmas romance

20 DECEMBER 2010

Russian dancer Artem Chigvintsev made his feelings for Kara Tointon abundantly clear during the Strictly Come Dancing finale.

Planting a passionate kiss on the soap actress' lips, before an audience of millions as they were crowned winners of this year's contest, he confirmed what has been an open secret for weeks – the twinkle-toed pair are crazy for each other.

On Monday morning as the couple emerged from her parents' home, where the professional dance hunk has been invited to spend Christmas, their excitement still hadn't died down.

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That was despite the fact that Kara, 27, had her arm in a sling due to an injury while training.

A trouper to the end, the former EastEnders star danced through the pain, performing an American smooth and a waltz, to clinch the title.

An X-ray during a visit to hospital in the early hours revealed that she'd torn a ligament in her arm. And it's obvious 28-year-old Artem is only too happy to supervise her R and R.

Having put their feelings on hold to concentrate on the competition, the gorgeous pair are now free to date – as the brunette beauty hinted ahead of Saturday's show.

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"Fingers crossed," she said. "We will see what happens".

"We get on brilliantly and it will be nice to do normal things like go to the cinema or for a meal because we spend all our time in the studio".

Normal things including spending rustling up festive treats for the Tointon family.

"He's going to cook for me in my mum and dad's kitchen. They've met him and they all get on so well".

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