The 32-year-old told pals he called time with actress Rebecca Humphries two weeks ago.
He insists the actress only turned up to the studios to cheer him on because she already had a reserved ticket.
A friend said: “Seann and Rebecca had a tempestuous relationship, which was pretty on and off.
“He says he called time on it days before her birthday – which is the night he and Katya kissed – and also explains why he wasn’t with Rebecca that evening.
“It’s also why he hasn’t issued a more explicit apology – as far as he’s concerned, he was a single man at the time of the snog.
“Yes, the timing still wasn’t great – but he feels he’s been unnecessarily vilified.”
Speaking on Strictly’s BBC2 spin-off show this week, the shaggy-haired funnyman apologised for the “hurt” he had caused.
He added: “We had a couple of drinks and made a huge regret, and I regret it hugely.”
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