The seventh season of the Indian Premier League is fast approaching, but before the action on the field begins, there is of course the crucial matter of the players auction.
This year, the players auction will be even more important than normal.
Last season was the end of a three-year contract cycle, meaning many more players will be in the pool of options this time around.
The results could make or break not only the fortunes of teams in the coming season, but in the two seasons that follow as well.
While players obviously need to perform on the pitch, significant strengths and weaknesses are formed in the function rooms of the auction.
Many of the players signed by franchises will be marquee names with obvious strength and prowess in the international game and Twenty20 formats. However, there are always a huge number of less-known players, who could be of enormous value to franchises at bargain prices.
In this slideshow, Bleacher Report will identify a number of potential hidden gems in this year's auction. By "hidden gems," we mean players that may be overlooked or undervalued.
It's worth noting that the complete list of players who have submitted their name for the auction is not released until just days before the day itself on February 12.
In most cases, it is relatively safe to assume the player in question will be involved.
For a complete guide to the 2014 players auction and rules, click here.