In a group that contains Ealing and Jersey, Hartpury and Nottingham knew it would be long odds against them progressing and so it proved when both lost their two opening games.

On the road, Hartpury conceded 119 points in the process but back on home soil, they defeated Nottingham for the second time in five weeks, having been successful 39-31 in the league fixture.

On that occasion, Hartpury had Gloucester flyhalf George Barton and Bristol prop Jonathan Benz-Salomon in their line-up but both were absent so Nottingham must have held high hopes of turning the tide.

However, for most of the game Nottingham were off the pace. They lost line-outs, gave away frequent penalties and kicked away possession which lively three-quarters, Charlie Thacker and David Williams, could have benefitted from.

Hence Hartpury held most of the aces with Mitch Eadie and Sam Lewis the stand-out performers in a dominant pack, which allowed halfbacks Tommy Matthews and JB Bruzulier to run the show.

Nottingham needed a response and got one when Williams ran elusively to score after being given his opportunity by a well-timed pass from Morgan Bunting.

Nottingham changed hookers at half-time and it paid immediate dividends when replacement Harry Clayton finished off a driving line-out.

However the hosts soon regained control when Bruzulier forced his way over from close-range before they scored the best try of the night when a swift round of passing presented Bradley Denty with an easy run-in.

Hartpury emphasised their superiority when William Tanner finished off another line-out drive. Nottingham grabbed the final try when Liam Slatem darted over.

Nottingham head coach Craig Hammond said: “We had high hopes of getting a result but we weren’t good enough as their line-out drive put us under a lot of pressure.”