The announcement, which was jointly made by SA Rugby and the British & Irish Lions on Thursday, builds on more than 30 years of the well-known whisky brand’s involvement with rugby.

The Famous Grouse will be the Official Whisky of the British & Irish Lions and SA Rugby for the Castle Lager Lions Series in 2021, and supporters will be able to get involved in the latest conversations and celebrate ‘The Spirit of Rugby’ with @TheFamousGrouseRugby on Twitter.

Apart from having access to players from both squads and revealing stories of team spirit and camaraderie, The Famous Grouse will also host activations at each tour match and in key fan zones, as well as allowing fans opportunities to watch a Lions’ training session and enjoy a matchday behind-the-scenes tour.

Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby, said: “We’re very excited to be introducing the proud history and heritage of the Springboks to The Famous Grouse as we welcome the Lions to the shores of South Africa in 2021.

“Fans can expect South Africa to be warm and hospitable hosts as we appreciate one of the biggest sporting occasions in world rugby. We’ll toast to that.”

Ben Calveley, Managing Director at the British & Irish Lions, said: “We are delighted to have agreed a partnership with The Famous Grouse ahead of our tour to South Africa next year. It is a brand known for its innovative and engaging approach to sponsorship and we look forward to working together to create a truly memorable series.”

Mark Riley, Managing Director at Edrington-Beam Suntory UK, said: “The Famous Grouse has been investing in the sport of rugby for the past 30 years, and we are very proud to have reaffirmed our commitment to this great game by agreeing these three exciting new partnerships at both international and club level to celebrate The Famous Grouse as The Spirit of Rugby.

“As the UK’s number one whisky, we recognise the value of team spirit and the level of determination required to be the best. This is synonymous with the desire, pride and camaraderie that we see every matchday out on the rugby field.

“These new partnerships are yet another significant milestone in The Famous Grouse’s journey to deliver fruitful collaborations which benefit all stakeholders, and particularly supporters of rugby.”