Superstitious Paul Hurst is wary of Shrewsbury's game No.13
Town boss Paul Hurst is desperately hoping it’s not unlucky 13 for his side tomorrow.
Shrews’ clash at rock-bottom Plymouth – their 13th in League One this season – is something of a nightmare for the superstitious.
And Hurst, whose side have not lost in the league since the final day of last season, has his own fair share of rituals, routines and traditions.
Town’s boss has been constantly wary of his side’s flying form coming to an abrupt end and his team might be fighting fate as well as Argyle for lucky No.13 against Derek Adams’ side tomorrow.
Hurst won’t need reminding that his Shrewsbury convoy travel down to the south coast on Friday 13th today.
Hosts Plymouth are without a win in 10 league games since downing Charlton on the second weekend of the season.
The Town boss’s superstitious nature is so strong that it is keeping him out of touch with certain figures.
He said: “Like a lot of people, I guess you don’t like certain routines to change. We’ve changed our routine in this interview – so that’ll be one of the reasons if we do lose!
“Ultimately I have to tell myself to stop being silly. I like certain things to be followed.
“I wear certain tops, it has to be the same shirt, even though they’re exactly the same. It’s quite foolish really.
“When I was playing, if I wasn’t captain, which I think only happened once, I liked to be the last player out. There were quite a few that did, we were trying to hang around and pretending to need the toilet again to be the last player out.
“I’d put my shin pads on in a certain order, really silly things. A lot of it is routine.
“Quite a lot of players have similar traits. Some probably turn up and don’t realise what they’re doing.
“I’ll give you one that’s going on at the minute – I won’t speak to someone, that I want to speak to, until we’ve suffered a defeat.
“The person knows, but I’m hoping I won’t have to speak with him for a while! At some point it’ll be nice to catch up with him.”
Town’s record unbeaten run in the Football League is 16 games, from the 1993/94 season.
After injuries to the likes of Bryn Morris and Joe Riley this season, Town are on their way to having a fully fit squad to chose from. With only striker Lenell John-Lewis, who is yet to start a league game, an injury doubt for the leaders, Hurst is blessed with an almost fully-fit squad.
“We’ve always seemed to have one or two out but, touch wood, we’ve done pretty well so far,” he added.
“We are getting to a point where everyone is just about right.
“That’s credit to the players, the staff for planning sessions and the care that players get.
“Of course it’ll mean it’s tougher for me on a matchday (to pick a squad) but that’s part and parcel of the job.
“The players find it too difficult to have too much to say at the minute in terms of an argument because of how things are going.
“But at the same time it’s not a case of ‘that team has won, or we’ve had a good result – we’ll stick with it’.
“We’ve got Saturday-Tuesday games coming, I’m conscious of that, added to the fact it’s a long, long journey thrown in.
“I’ve got to hope those decisions are proved right.”