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Hunts Enjoying Life At PNE

8 May 2013

The central defender praised the fans and his teammates alike in an exclusive interview with PNE.Com.

Paul Huntington joined the Lilywhites for the beginning of the 2012/13 season and finished the campaign in exceptional form, culminating in a nomination for npower League One Player of the Month for March.

And despite playing for club’s with the stature of Newcastle and Leeds United previously, the North End No.4 is pleased to be a part of a prestigious Club such as Preston North End.

“This is a great Club,” stated Huntington.

“I love playing at home, the fans have been great this year through topsy-turvy times.

“It has been up and down but they have stuck with us and everyone wants next season to be the special one and I have enjoyed being here and the set of lads are great.

“I have enjoyed every minute of being here and it is an enjoyable place to go to work and I think that is the main thing.

“As a group, there were a lot of changes early on and we got off to quite a good start up until about November and then we hit a rough patch and then finished the season off well and it gives us something to look forward to next year.

“What we have done towards the end of the season has been enjoyable.

“The new management team have come in and they have made everyone enjoy training and put smiles on everyone’s faces and as I say, everyone is enjoying it and has been playing their own game and I think we have seen the benefits of that and everyone feels a lot more relaxed and it is a good place to be.”

Huntington and North End Young Player of the Year Bailey Wright, have struck up a formidable partnership of late at the heart of the Preston defence, with the duo playing together in 14 of the last 15 games, conceding only six goals in those contests and the former Yeovil Town captain believes that they can go on to bigger and better things next season.

“Having a solid partnership does help,” added Huntington.

“As the season has gone on, we have learnt a lot about each other, both on and off the pitch and our relationship is very good and we pull each other through.

“We have both really enjoyed it and we will be looking to build on that for next year.”

With Huntington being the modest character that he is, he refused to give a personal highlight of the season just gone, but instead focused on giving the team all the credit for a strong end to the year and he is hoping that after a good rest in the summer, he and his teammates will be fit and ready to go for 2013/14.

“I would say the way we have finished the season as a team,” said Hunts, when asked about his highlight of the season.

“I’m not one for being about individual gain and it is very much about the team.

“Overall we have underperformed, but under the changes that have been made and the new management, I think we can be a lot more positive going into next season and obviously their [the management team] track record speaks for itself.

“We all want to be part of that and achieve something.

“I’m not saying it is going to be easy, because nothing is in life and that is one of the things the manager says, ‘you get nothing for free’ and ‘nothing is ever easy’, so we are going to have to work and hopefully we will have a good pre-season behind us, stay fit and hopefully we can start the season well.

“I think for the first month you tend to rest, it has been a long and hard season and you are active for ten of the 12 months of the year.

“You have got to give yourself a rest for them four weeks and then it is a gradual build up, basically we have got off-season programmes that we have been given and you start off with some longer based runs, then shorter running and gym work before we come back, so it is a gradual process but you don’t want to be peaking too soon on the first day of pre-season, you just want to comeback in a good condition so you can then improve it for the start of the season.

“Gone are the days of doing nothing and obviously the diets and the foods you eat and the off-season programmes have changes from back in the day.

“That can benefit you when you get back and it is just a case of looking after your body and first of all letting it recover and rest and then going again in June, building up to coming back for pre-season.”

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