The 2012-13 edition of the Prof DB Deodhar Trophy will kick start at the Nehru Stadium in Guwahati on Sunday with South Zone taking on East Zone in the only quarterfinal of the limited-overs tournament.
The first semi-final of the event will be played between Central Zone and North Zone on March 11, while defending champions West Zone will face the winners of the match between South and East in the second semifinal on March 12.
The final is scheduled for March 13.
The annual limited-overs competition, featuring the five zonal teams, was instituted in 1973-74. The tournament comprised 60 over-a-side matches from 1973-74 to 1979-80. The number of overs was reduced to 50 in 1979-80.
It was a knockout competition till 1992-93. The league format was adopted from 1993-94 to 1999-2000, wherein the five teams played each other once, and a total of 10 matches were played, a statement from the BCCI said.
The tournament was played on a knockout basis in 2000-01, and the league format was reinstated from 2001-02 to 2007-08, the release added.
The 2008-09 season saw the addition of a sixth team --Zimbabwe President's XI.
The last three editions of the tournament -- 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12 -- have been played on a knockout basis.
With 13 titles under its belt, North Zone have won the tournament maximum number of times. West Zone are ranked second with 11 triumphs, while South Zone has won the trophy six times, and East and Central Zones have triumphed four times each.