Lee Ashcroft believes centre-back partner Callum Morris is one of the best defenders he has played alongside after the Dunfermline duo put up the shutters to frustrate Queen of the South.
The 24-year-old heaped praise on Morris, who led by example at Palmerston after a spell on international duty with Northern Ireland.
The Pars responded to back-to-back defeats with a solid show against the Doonhamers which gleaned a hard-fought point in what was the final game of the first quarter of Championship fixtures.
Boss Allan Johnston was impressed with the efforts of his central-defensive pairing, and Ashcroft saluted the performance of skipper Morris.
He said: “I thought big Callum was fantastic and the man of the match.
“When you’ve got a boy playing like that beside you it just makes it easier to do the right things.
“It was a real captain’s performance from him and we did what we had to do, which was keep a clean sheet.
“The more you play alongside someone, the better the partnership gets.
“I’ve played beside a lot of boys but he’s certainly one of the best. He keeps me right and I keep him right.
“I think coming back from international duty has given him a lot of confidence.
“He’s training with some great players and it is a great squad they’ve got. He has come back and was flying, so hopefully he can keep that going for us.”
Ashcroft could have won a tight affair in wet and windy conditions for the Pars in the last minute, but his header from Kallum Higginbotham’s corner was cleared off the line by Queens sub Callum Tapping.
“I got the header off, and as soon as I stuck my head on it I thought it was in,” he said.
“But their player has done well to clear it off the line. It’s a bit of a gutter.
“Both sets of defenders defended well. It’s a tough pitch to come and play on, and they did test us.
“We’re happy enough with how we’ve done so far. Hopefully we can start the next quarter in the same way we started this one, and I think we’d take the same amount of points again.”
Pars boss Allan Johnston felt neither side deserved to win but believes his side have established a platform from which they can build on this autumn.
He said: “It looked like both teams were making sure they didn’t lose the match.
“You couldn’t fault any team in terms of trying but there was a lack of quality.
“We want to be in touch with the top teams and we’re still there, but we want to kick-on now in the second quarter.”
Queens boss Gary Naysmith said: “I thought we were well worth a point and were the better team.
“All that was missing was a goal,” he added.