Tennis star and reluctant cyclist finds that two wheels beat four when the traffic's gridlocked...

Tennis star Serena Williams hopped on a bike yesterday to beat a traffic jam in Miami and ensure she wouldn’t miss her match in the Miami Masters at Key Biscayne.

The 31-year-old, who is aiming to move ahead of Steffi Graff as the most successful player in the tournament’s history – each has five titles – said afterwards: "Riding to the match was probably one of my best memories ever," reports the BBC.

Her match was due to start at 8pm, and she risked missing it due to gridlock along the Rickenbacker Causeway between Miami and the island where the tournament is being held.

"The traffic was crazy and everyone was like, 'I have been here for an hour, and I'm staying like eight minutes away','” explained Williams.

"I'm like, 'OK, I'm not going to make my match'.

"So I asked for a golf cart, and the hotel didn't have a golf cart. Then they were like, 'We have a motor bike'. I'm like, 'I don't do motor bikes'.

"They said, 'We have a bicycle'. I said, 'I really don't do bicycles, but I will today'.”

Reluctant cyclist she may have been, but in making the match, Williams confirmed a finding shown by a succession of commuter races that pit different forms of transport against each other - up to a certain distance, bicycles will always beat cars. 

Williams, who has 15 Grand Slam titles to her name, went on to beat Japan’s Ayumi Morita 6-3, 6-3 in the third round match.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.