Sainsbury's sales figures race ahead of Morrisons

Sainsbury's struck "Paralympic gold" after its sponsorship of the London 2012 Games helped its sales to sprint ahead, but rival Morrisons suffered its worst performance for about seven years.

Sainsbury's sales grew by 7.9 per cent in the four weeks to 30 September, according to data from the retail analyst Kantar Worldpanel.

Edward Garner, of Kantar, said Sainsbury's benefited from its high-profile sponsorship of, and advertising campaign around, the Paralympics, plus its Brand Match promotion and the ongoing relaunch of its own label range.

But Morrisons posted a calamitous 1.9 per cent fall in revenues, which is understood to be its first decline since 2005.