Rimington were unceremoniously dumped out of the East Lancashire League President’s Cup by Second Division Rishton, and thoroughly deserved to be beaten.
From as early as the warm-up, the First Division leaders were not at the races, and, facing a Rishton team who were determined to put up a good showing, the signs didn’t look good.
Playing into the strong wind, the villagers didn’t string many passes of any note together, while the home side used the conditions well, the two strikers causing all sorts of problems.
On eight minutes, Kershaw had to punch away a cross, and the ball was fired back past him, McCarthy doing well to block the effort on the line.
This should have alerted Rimington, but just two minutes later a long ball into the channel was reached by a forward, who cut in from the bye-line before firing into the roof of the net.
On 16 minutes Rishton could have doubled the lead, a free header from a corner clearing the bar.
Their advantage was doubled just before the half hout, as two very poor challenges left the striker with the task of rounding Kershaw to stroke the ball home.
It summed up Rimington’s abject half when they had their first real attempt on goal in the 40th minute, McLean trying his luck from 30 yards but failing to hit the target.
Fagan had to withdraw with a back injury to be replaced by Gawthorpe.
The visitors’ hopes of salvaging the game in the second half quickly disappeared on 52 minutes as Dinsdale was caught in possession on the edge of his own area, and the ensuing shot flew into the bottom corner giving Kershaw no chance.
With 20 minutes remaining, McLean chipped a great free kick into Dinsdale, and his header was blocked. In the melee, Drake appeared to have prodded the ball over the line, but the ref was unsighted and play continued. In a last bid to get into the game, Drake and Jackson were replaced by Blackburn and Bagot, and they breathed some life into the team, but when Bagot did brilliantly to turn his man on the edge of the area, he fired his shot over.
Rimington boss Terry Braithwaite warned his side after their cup exit.
The long-serving manager said: ‘ We were not like us at all, there was no desire, no spirit, no quality, and some of my players looked like they hadn’t broken sweat at the end.
“The players need to take a long, hard look at themselves, and ask if they want this enough, because any more performances like this and my last season is likely to end up trophy-less.”