A tense finish resulted in The Green and Whites coming up short against Hartpury RFC on Friday night.

Tries from Sam Spink, Will Owen and Billy Robinson were not enough to seal a victory for Neil Fowkes’ men.

The hosts took an early lead after a commanding lineout drive saw Fijian international Akapusi Qera power over for the first points of the game.

The Green and White’s got themselves on the board through the ever-reliable boot of Shane O’Leary, however the Hartpury fly-half, Leeming responded with two penalties of his own to give the Gloucestershire side an 11-3 lead.

Nottingham were forced into making some early changes after a number of significant injuries, however, Sam Spink’s unconverted try just before the break reduced the deficit to 3 points.

On the stroke of half-time, Leeming successfully kicked his third penalty of the game to stretch Hartpury into a 14-8 lead.

The Green and Whites appeared rejuvenated after the restart and began to pressurise the hosts. Nottingham’s relentless attacking threat was rewarded when Will Owen dotted down for a try, which was followed up with a confident conversion from Lyons to take the score to 14-15.

Nottingham’s lead was short-lived after the referee deemed the visitors to have collapsed a driving maul and awarded the home side a penalty try, which saw Llewellyn Jones earn ten minutes in the sin bin.

Shortly before full-time, both teams found themselves down to fourteen after Hartpury lost their replacement loosehead to the sin bin following sustained attacking pressure from the Green and Whites.

Billy Robinson scored a try in the 79th minute to give Nottingham a conversion to win the game but unfortunately, Lyons’ effort strayed just wide of the uprights and the home side claimed a 21-20 victory.

Next up, Nottingham host Richmond at The Bay on Sunday 24 March. Advance tickets can be purchased via nottinghamrugbydirect.co.uk.