Brewing giant Marston's triumphed at the Hollis Sponsorship Awards when its backing of the England cricket team won the coveted Sports Sponsorship trophy.
The company's position as the 'Official Beer of the English Cricket Team', its planning, execution, innovation and evaluation of its first national sponsorship activity was praised by judges, beating E.On's FA Cup sponsorship, the Guinness Premiership and John Smiths' Grand National patronage to the award.
Marston's operates four breweries including Banks's in Wolverhampton and Marston's in Burton-on-Trent, with pub estates totalling 2,274 nationwide.
Peter Jackson, marketing director at Marston's Beer Company, said: "It's a great boost and shows that our investment and support of the England cricket team has been given national recognition.
"That we were up against such high profile sports sponsorships and won – is the absolute icing on the cake. Our great relationship with the ECB has made this first national sponsorship deal very smooth indeed.
"We look forward to sponsoring the team through the summer tours and now the T20 Challenge Cup."
Marston's four year sponsorship deal with the ECB has seen Pedigree become the official beer of English cricket, supporting the team's international fixtures including the Ashes tour to Australia and taking the company's beers to a number of international markets.
Mr Jackson said: "We are looking forward to two big summers of cricket, and with England knocked out of Euro 2008, we are expecting sport lovers to watch live cricket here in Marston's pubs."