LANCASHIRE League chiefs have pulled off a major coup for the famous competition after landing a lucrative three-year sponsorship deal with brewing giants Heineken UK.

And now lovers of the game can raise a glass of the Amber Nectar thanks to the deal which will see the competition known as the Foster’s Lancashire Cricket League.

The re-branding of the league is a major boost for it’s profile and comes after a three-year sponsor-ship deal with Blackburn-based brewers Daniel Thwaites came to an end.

“It’s a great deal for us,” said Lancashire League chairman Mike Bibby. “We have had three good years from Thwaites but they are heavily involved with Lancashire and we wish them all the best for the future.

“This new deal with Heineken UK is one that is mutually beneficial to both parties and we really look forward to working closely with them.”

The Foster’s name has long been associated with sport ever since the Australian lager was first imported into the UK from Down Under in its distinctive blue, white and gold cans in the early 1970s.

Aussie actor Paul Hogan earned worldwide fame by advertising the lager on TV and in recent years Foster’s sponsored F1 events regularly from 1986 to 2006.

During that period it was the title sponsor for the Australian GP, the British GP and the San Marino GP.

The brand was also used in a sponsorship deal with the A1 Team Australia from 2005 to 2007 and is currently used as a major sponsor of the ASP World Tour.

In addition Surrey’s famous Oval was known as the Foster’s Oval for a period.

“When you look at some of the associations Foster’s have had with sport in the past it is a great thing for us,” added Bibby.

“We are really delighted with the link up between Heineken UK and the league and we can look forward to the next three seasons.

“The league executive committee is naturally happy with the deal, as are the clubs and there is no doubt this is a good thing for the everyone involved.”

Heineken UK will also sponsor the Worsley Cup under the Foster’s brand and Bibby says talks have been ongoing for a new locally-based sponsor for the Twenty20 competition and hopes to be able to unveil that deal shortly.

“We have had meetings but it wouldn’t be right to say any more just yet,” he said.

The deal runs until December 31, 2014.