TOM Killick praised Poole Town's fighting qualities to overcome a nightmare start against rivals Weymouth and remain in pole position for the final Southern League South play-off place.

Dolphins trailed inside 20 seconds at Black Gold Stadium after confusion at the back allowed Calvin Brooks to roll the ball into the net from the edge of the box.

The hosts got back on level terms in the 23rd minute thanks to a blistering long-range strike from Corby Moore.

Killick's men almost snatched victory 10 minutes into the second half but Adam Grange's low shot struck the post.

With one game to play, Poole hold a one-point advantage over sixth-placed Kings Langley, who suffered a 1-0 reverse at strugglers Walton Casuals.

Killick told the Daily Echo: "We talked about the fact they would be nervous but giving them a goal in the first minute removed any element of that.

"We wanted to make life difficult for them and allow the nerves to increase among them and their supporters but suddenly there is euphoria in their team and it relaxed them.

"We fought back well and got the goal through a brilliant strike.

"We had the shot that hit the post, which was unfortunate, but most independent people will probably say a draw is a fair result.

"We are all about showing our fight and we have a huge team spirit. If there was a side to bounce back from that early adversity, I think it would be us and that is what happened."

Weymouth went on the front foot from kick-off. After neat play down the right wing, Josh Leslie-Smith failed to clear and Terras midfielder Brooks slotted home beyond Luke Cairney.

Abdulai Baggie went close to doubling the lead in the ninth minute but his shot struck the outside of the post.

Dolphins restored parity when a poor clearance from Cherries loanee Sam Sherring fell to Moore. The central midfielder strode forward before unleashing a venomous shot from 25 yards out which flew into the net off the underside of the crossbar.

In the second half, Grange came closest to netting a winner when his effort beat Tom McHale but hit the inside of the near post and arrowed across the goalmouth, with marksman James Constable unable to make significant contact on the rebound.

Marvin Brooks sent a header off target just before the hour mark and Jez Bedford had a close-range effort blocked late on.

Weymouth, who saw their lead at the top of the table cut to one point, pressed for a winner but failed to test Cairney.

"They, understandably, looked very nervous," said Killick. "We were very good on the ball and made life very difficult for them.

"We could have shown a bit more quality ourselves when we got the ball in good positions.

"We did the ugly side of things well but when we needed more cohesion and composure we were a little bit lacking.

"I'm reasonably happy with a point after the Kings Langley result went our way."

Dolphins: Cairney, Dickson, Smeeton, Leslie-Smith, Whisken, Grange (Clarke, 75), Griffin, Moore, Constable (Scrimshaw, 62), Brooks, Bedford. Unused subs: Spetch, Hanfrey, Boote.