Diageo has signed a deal with Premier Rugby to extend its sponsorship of the Guinness Premiership for a further season.

The sponsorship of the league will extend up until the end of the 2009/10 season and will "further build on the association with the Guinness brand", the company said today (14 May).

Lee Bailey, Guinness sponsorship manager at Diageo GB, said: "We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Premier Rugby to extend our partnership for a further season. The last four years of the Guinness Premiership have been fantastic for us and we are proud to be the number one beer brand consumers associate with rugby in GB.

"Guinness and rugby is the perfect fit and we have a long association with rugby including sponsorship of the upcoming British & Irish Lions tour to South Africa, London Irish, Ireland RFU and the Hong Kong 7's and it is great to be continuing our commitment to the sport, especially as we celebrate our 250th year."

Premier Rugby chief executive Mark McCafferty said: "We are extremely pleased to have concluded this extension with Diageo. They have been a fantastic partner for the best part of four years and we are relishing the opportunity to extend that partnership at a time of significant growth for the sport."

Premier Rugby announced in January that they had concluded a new television deal with Setanta and Sky Sports to televise 69 live Premiership matches from the start of the 2010/11 season.