- The 68th Senior National Championship for Men and Women will be held at Chennai, Tamil Nadu from 17th to 24th January 2018.
- Uttarakhand Men and Kerala Women are the defending champions from the previous edition held in Puducherry.
Bengaluru, 16th January 2018: The 68th Senior National Championship for Men and Women will be held at the JLN Stadium, Chennai, Tamil Nadu from 17th to 24th January 2018. The Championship is being organised by the Tamil Nadu Basketball Association under the aegis of the Basketball Federation of India. The centre of attraction would be the number of International players participating in this Championship, increasing the level of competition.
The prestigious Championship will feature the best basketball talent from various Indian States and Union territories and will be played in a league cum knockout format. This Championship is one of the biggest and most important basketball events in the country every year because it plays a major role in the selection process for the Senior Indian Men’s and Women’s teams based on the player performances.
The 25+ teams in each of the men’s and women’s section are grouped into two levels: Upper Level 1 and Lower Level 2. Level 1 features the top 10 teams from the previous championship divided into two groups of five teams each. Level 2 features the remaining teams.The tournament is played on a league cum knockout basis. In the league stages, all teams from each group play each other once. The top three Level 1 teams from each of the two groups qualify to the quarterfinals stage. The bottom (i.e. 5th) teams are relegated to the lower Level 1 for next year, while the two fourth-placed teams from both the Level 1 groups play pre-quarterfinal games against the top two teams from Level 2.
Level 2 features four Groups (C, D, E and F) usually of 4-5 teams each. After the league stages, the top four teams (one from each Group) play qualifying matches in order to attempt to move to the Upper Level. The two winning teams after these qualifying matches immediately qualify to the Upper Level in the next edition, replaced the bottom two (i.e. 5th placed) teams from the upper Level 1 Groups. These two Level 2 to Level 1 qualifying teams also play another match which in turn allows the winning team to pick their pre-quarterfinal opponent (basically choosing between either the 4th placed team in Level 1 Group A or the 4th placed team in Level 1 Group B).For all the remaining Level 2 teams which didn’t qualify to the knockout stages of the main competition, a separate ‘Loser’s Knockout’ Tournament is held between them in order to give these teams much-needed match practice, and a chance for them to test their bench strength.
The finals standings from the previous version of this Championship held at Puducherry in January 2017: