After 11 consecutive wins in League and Cup competitions, second-place Mousehole had to settle for a solitary point at fourth-bottom Dobwalls, and despite the consolation of earning their 10th ‘clean sheet’ of the season they will be reflecting how to turn their superiority into wins against physically aggressive and defensively-minded opponents.

The management duo of Simon Westlake and Ben Washam made their former club Plymstock United a hard team to beat, and they have brought similar battling qualities to this Dobwalls squad.  The Seagulls certainly knew they were in for a difficult afternoon when first Paulo Sousa and then captain Billy Curtis were flattened by flying tackles in the opening period – the latter incident resulting in a 5-minute long treatment session on the pitch – but without any sanction from referee Clements.

Despite being knocked out of their stride, Mousehole still created enough chances to score in both halves.  Chris Prout drove an early 25-yard free kick millimetres over the bar, Will Vouama had a goalbound shot tipped over by goalkeeper Bruce Shields, Liam Andrew headed just wide from a corner, and Paulo Sousa shot straight at the ‘keeper when well placed.

Dobwalls were content to hold on to the point they started with, rarely venturing forward and relying on set pieces to get the ball anywhere near the visitors’ goal.  But Mousehole made a slow start to the second half and were relieved to see a chance go over the bar after a sudden break, virtually Dobwalls’ only serious attack during the 90 minutes.  The Seagulls experienced an increasingly frustrating last half hour, with the hosts pulling all players back into the final third to deny space.  Jake Andrew headed over when Luke Johnson’s cross for once found him in front of goal and then in the last minute a right-sided free kick skimmed through quickly to Billy Curtis a few feet out but he turned the chance over the bar.

The draw moves Mousehole down to fourth place, with their six promotion rivals – currently separated by 10 points – having the opportunity to play ‘catch up’ with their League games in hand this weekend while The Seagulls are in Cup action.

Mousehole:  Steve Parker-Billinge, Billy Curtis (captain), Liam Andrew, Calum Elliot, Chris Prout, Kevin Lawrence, Jordan Adlard, William Vouama, Connor Davey, Jake Andrew, Paulo Sousa.   Substitutes:  Luke Johnson (for Connor Davey, 64), Steven Ziboth (for Jordan Adlard, 75), Tyler Tonkin, Jamie Thomson

*This Saturday (3rd) Mousehole face their third Cup quarter-final in recent weeks when East Division Teignmouth visit Trungle Parc in the SWP League Cup (kick off 2:30pm).  Teignmouth are currently in mid-table in their Division but with several games in hand over most teams above them, at least partly because of their outstanding Cup success this season.  Like Mousehole, Teignmouth are undefeated in Cup competitions, and have already won through to the semi-finals of the Devon Premier Cup.  To reach Saturday’s League Cup quarter-final tie, they beat two West Division sides away, and then Penzance at home.  In all, they have won 7 Cup ties, 5 of them away, so the forthcoming encounter is likely to be both fascinating and close.  Mousehole reached this stage with an away win over West Division leaders Ludgvan followed by two home wins over Premier Division sides Camelford and Launceston.  The winners of Saturday’s tie will face a Premier Division side – one of Falmouth Town, Godolphin Atlantic, and either Tavistock or Plymouth Parkway, in the semi-finals on 20th/21st March.

*In the Cornwall Senior Cup, Mousehole’s reward for their quarter-final 5-0 win over Premier Division Newquay is a semi-final tie next Wednesday (7th March) against another Premier Division side St Austell, at Bickland Park, Falmouth Town FC, kick off 7:30pm.  The tie will be Mousehole’s first-ever appearances in the Senior Cup semi-finals, whereas St Austell have won the Cup three times in the last nine years and 14 times overall.  The other semi-final brings together Saltash United and Torpoint Athletic, with the Final to be played at St Blazey on Easter Monday.


*In the Cornwall Charity Cup, after Mousehole’s 4-0 quarter-final win against Penzance, they have been drawn against Liskeard Athletic in the semi-finals, held at neutral venues – to be announced in due course – on 10th and 11th April. The other semi-final is St Blazey against Wadebridge Town, and the Final is scheduled for 9th May.

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