"God's Own Country", India's southern state of Kerala, has long been known for being a hotbed for basketball, featuring some of the country's finest players and basketball tournaments. Yet, it took 13 years for an All India club tournament to return to the state's capital and largest city, Thiruvanathapuram. Starting from Sunday, August 4th, that wait will be over. The Thiruvanathapuram District Basketball Association (TDBA) will launch the first ever Midhun Markose TDBA All India Basketball Tournament for Men & Women at the Central Stadium in the city. The tournament, featuring seven Men's teams and four women's teams from across the nation, will be held from August 4-9.
Kerala's Minister of Health VS Sivakumar will be present as a special guest on the opening day of the matches to greet the players.
Here is the list of participating teams:
Group A: Indian Overseas Bank (Chennai), Vijaya Bank (Bangalore), Kerala Police (Thiruvanathapuram).
Group B: Indian Army, Customs & Central Excise (Kochi), KSEB (Thiruvanathapuram), Mar Baselios College of Engineering (Thiruvanathapuram).
Women: KSEB (Thiruvanathapuram), Kerala Police, Central Railway (Mumbai), South Western Railway (Hubli).
Although many of India's top male players are currently in Manila with the national team for the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship, the tournament in Thiruvanathapuram should feature enough star power amongst the remaining male and female players.
The championship will reward a total prize money of Rs. 1.5 lakhs.