About Tyers: Long Story

From his very first published work, a poem in the junior school magazine about the plight of an Inuit fisherman – “Please, oh God Ranjoli, give me a fish” – it was clear that the writing of Alan Tyers would be characterised by a directness of thought, a clarity of language and a deficiency of research as glaring as the absence of any entity called Ranjoli in the Inuit pantheon.

The seeds were sown for a career in which making stuff up would always be preferred to finding stuff out, which proved useful when writing TV gossip for The Sun, but disastrous in a month-long stint on a trade paper about the Gas and Oil Industries. Was the BP oil spill the fault of Tyers? Of course not. But was he blameless? Of course not.

Other jobs that Tyers has been very bad at include: covering Rugby League for a national newspaper despite not knowing the rules or who any of the players were, selling paint on the telephone, sub-editing in many and miserable guises and handing out leaflets for what transpired to be a cult.

But it was in 2002 that he finally achieved the greatness for which he had long been earmarked when named Eton College’s Most Downwardly Mobile Old Boy a record five years in a row. The biggest job of them all came calling: ghost-writing the diary of the Bacardi Breezer Cat as part of that alcopop manufacturer’s World Cup campaign website.

This propelled Tyers into the stratosphere of sports humorists and it was a surprise to nobody that he has not had a full-time gig since. Instead, he divides his time between London, New York and the pub, writing satirical and / or humorous articles about sport for, among others, The Cricketer, The Daily Telegraph, Football365.com and Cricinfo.com

It would be disingenuous to deny that the glamour, the riches and the acclaim of his peers are unwelcome to Tyers, or at least he imagines they would be, but it is the simple contentment of a job well done, a smile put on even one face, the quiet but certain knowledge that one more satisfied customer has sipped happily from the Tyers well that really gets him out of bed in the afternoons. Testimonials from some recent admiring readers have included:

“Alan Tyers is about as funny as a death in the family”

“I can’t believe Tyler gets paid for this”

“Why is Tyers allowed to continue spreading his venom in your magazine?”


“£100K p.a. to rewrite a comedy tea-towel?”

With no worlds left to conquer in journalism, Tyers – with the unerring eye for a commercial opportunity that saw him named in Forbes Magazine’s “Thirsty Under Forty: The Poorest Non-Homeless Low-Functioning Alcoholics In The Media” – turned his attention to the world of publishing. It is no exaggeration to say that a flurry of books including W.G. Grace Ate My Pedalo, a spoof Victorian cricket annual whose sole redeeming feature is its superb illustrations by his friend and colleague Beach, and CrickiLeaks – The Secret Ashes Diaries, will save the publishing industry, or kill it entirely.

In 2011, as part of a community outreach programme, Tyers was offered, and took, a job on the Daily Telegraph sports desk. As of mid-2013, this administrative oversight on the part of one of the world’s great newspapers remains uncorrected.

2012 saw Beach still unable to rid himself of Tyers, leading to a further foray into ‘Victoriana. Gin And Juice: The Victorian Guide To Parenting’. In the summer of that year, the duo landed one of the most coveted roles in publishing when they were asked to ghost-write and art-direct the autobiography of football legend Ronnie Matthews: ‘I Kick Therefore I Am’

In November 2012, Bloomsbury published a third Victoriana book by Tyers and Beach. It is called ‘Who Moved My Stilton? The Victorian Guide To Getting Ahead In Business’. Once again, the pictures are really terrific.

November 2013 will see the release of Tyers and Beach’s most ambitious project to-date, ‘Tutenkhamen’s Tracksuit: A History Of Sport In 100-ish Objects’, a magnificent full-colour exhibition catalogue to accompany the acclaimed exhibition of the same name at the National Museum of the History of Sport, Orkney.

You can email Tyers here alantyers@gmail.com, if you are so minded