New Delhi: Hockey India, the sport's governing body, is all set to stage the Senior Men National Championship in Bhopal from June 10-19.

This will be the first ever nationals since HI took over from the Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) as sport's governing body.

HI had earlier also attempted to hold the tournament a couple of times but failed to do so as the power struggle between the IHF and HI had resulted in scheduling, rescheduling and cancellation of the event a number of times.

The previous national championships were held in 2006 in Delhi and Punjab and were conducted by the IHF.

Out of the 35 affiliated units of the HI, 32 teams have confirmed their participation in the Championship, which will be played on a league cum knockout format.

The matches will be played simultaneously on four artificial pitches at Aishbagh Stadium, Mayur Park and Sports Authority of India turfs. Floodlights will be used at both Aishbagh Stadium and Sports Authority of India Centre.

The inaugural match will be played between hosts Madhya Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir on June 10 at Aishbagh Stadium.

During the course of the National Championship, HI selectors will select the probables for the next coaching camps for the preparation of the Indian national team for various International competitions in 2011 and 2012.

The Indian men team will compete in the Asian Champions Trophy at Ordos, China in early September followed by a Test series and Four Nation Tournament in Australia in October.

India will then play in the 33rd FIH Men's Champions Trophy at Delhi in December and also host the first Olympic Qualifier for the London Olympic Games.

This Qualifier will be played from February 15-26 next year.

The teams have been divided into eight Pools:

Pool A: Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Uttarakhand
Pool B: Chandigarh, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Assam
Pool C: Delhi, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Bengal
Pool D: Air India, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Chhattisgarh
Pool E: Services, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Manipur
Pool F: Haryana, Maharashtra, Goa, Meghalaya
Pool G: Railways Sports Promotion Board, Combined
Universities, Puducherry, Tripura Olympic Association
Pool H: Orissa, M P, Andaman & Nicobar, Jammu & Kashmir.

(Agencies)