Exeter proved their credentials in this season’s Amlin Challenge Cup when they got their European campaign back on track with a convincing 68-0 victory over Italian side Cavalieri Prato.
The Aviva Premiership Rugby side, who narrowly lost to French giants Perpignan on the road last weekend, were at their irresistible best at Sandy Park and romped to a 10-try victory and will prove a formidable challenge in the tournament at home.
Newport Gwent Dragons, who cruised to victory over Perpignan at Rodney Parade on Thursday, will be the Chiefs next opponents in what promises to be mouthwatering back-to-back clashes in Pool 4 in mid-December.
The Chiefs had raced to a 34-0 by half-time and had recorded the all-important bonus point when they crossed for their fourth try just before the break, but the Italian side's repeated indiscipline proved costly for the visitors.
Flanker Emanuele Leonardi and No 8 Uili Kolo'ofai were both shown the yellow card by French referee Laurent Cardona and Cavalieri Prato played 20 minutes of the first half with only 14 men on the field of play.
The Chiefs trademark power, particularly at the scrum, just proved too much for the Italian part-timers who qualified as runners up in Italy's Super 10 championship last season and the home side were rewarded with two penalty tries in each half.
After the break, the Chiefs ran riot and crossed for a further five tries by Joseph Tatu, Mark Foster, James Phillips, Chris Bentley and Jack Nowell but coach Rob Baxter will be delighted with his side's defence which kept the Italians to nil.