‘Crazy’ Ryan Giggs in an Australian state of mind

Ryan Giggs can look on the funny side during a news conference on Sunday in Sydney. Daniel Munoz / Reuters
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Ryan Giggs admits it is “crazy” how he still manages to maintain his motivation.

Giggs, about to start his 23rd season as a Manchester United player, is the proud owner of a record 13 Premier League titles.

Speaking on his arrival in Sydney for the second leg of United’s pre-season tour on Sunday, he said he still loved playing the game.

“Crazy, aren’t I?” he said. “I’m enjoying it just as much as I did 20 years ago. It’s as simple as that.

“Every year is a bonus to me. Take last year: winning the league, that feeling you have after the hard work you put in. Winning that trophy makes it all worthwhile.”

It is United’s first visit to Australia since 1999 and this time around Giggs will have the chance to see one of sport’s fiercest rivalries.

Wednesday’s Rugby League State of Origin decider between Queensland and New South Wales – in the same ANZ Stadium that United’s sell-out tour match against the A-League All Stars will take place on Saturday evening – represents an occasion for Giggs to relish.

“I’m a big rugby league fan,” said Giggs, 39.

“I had the great pleasure of spending some time with Melbourne Storm when they were playing in Leeds in the World Cup Challenge.

“I spent some time with Billy Slater and Cameron Smith, who are Queenslanders. I’ve also had a text off Andrew Johns telling me in no uncertain terms who I need to support on Wednesday.

“I’m in Sydney, so I’ll be supporting New South Wales.”

– Press Association