The second edition of the Bangabandhu Asian Senior Men’s Central Zone Volleyball Championship 2018 gets underway in Mirpur’s Shaheed Suhrawardi Indoor Stadium Saturday.
Five countries took part in the inaugural edition of the tournament two years ago but the number of participating nations has increased this time around to six.
Host Bangladesh, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal and Maldives will do battle against each other with the final scheduled to be held on April 27.
Bangladesh emerged as the champion in the inaugural edition and in order to defend their title, the Bangladesh Volleyball Federation initially organised a preliminary national camp from January 15-21.
Later, the players underwent long-term training under the supervision of local and foreign coaches.
The participating countries have already started arriving in Dhaka with Kyrgyzstan the first side to set foot in the capital Wednesday.
Bangladesh have been grouped in Pool A alongside Maldives and Nepal while Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan make up Group B.
Following the opening ceremony Saturday, the home side will take on Nepal in the inaugural game at 4pm.
Bangladesh will conclude their group stage campaign Monday against Maldives at 5pm.
The top two teams from each group will advance to the semi-finals. Both the last-four clashes will be held Wednesday.