Virat Kohli
Kohli's Royal Challengers Bangalore finished as runners-up in 2016 Reuters

Indian Premier League franchises who are gearing up for the 2017 player auction have released quite a few big names while retaining as many as 140 cricketers including 44 overseas signings.

Dale Steyn (Gujarat Lions), Kevin Pietersen (Rising Pune Supergiants), Trent Boult (Sunrisers Hyderabad), Mitchell Johnson (Kings XI Punjab) and Ishant Sharma (RPS) were among the high-profile players who have lost their contract ahead of the 2017 season, according to list released by the league's official website.

Both the Indian captains Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni have been retained by their respective franchises along with other Indian cricket team regulars.

Dhoni-led RPS have released the most number of players (11) in a bid to come up with a better show in the next edition following their horrid debut season, in which they finished second last.

Here is the list of how the eight teams look like ahead of the 2017 auction.

Rising Pune Supergiants

Current Squad: Dhoni, Rahane, Ashwin, Smith, Du Plessis, Marsh, Khawaja Dinda, Bains, Bhatia, A Sharma, I Pandey, Zampa, Jaskaran, Aparajith, Chahar

Released list: Pietersen, Ishant, Pathan, Perera, RP Singh, Boland, M Ashwin, Handscomb, Tiwary, Morkel, Bailey

Gujarat Lions

Current Squad: Raina, Jadeja, Faulkner, McCullum, Bravo, Finch, D Smith, Karthik, Kulkarni, P Kumar, Tye, Kishan, Sangwan, Kaushik, Jakati, J Shah

Released list: Steyn, Dogra, Dwivedi, Ladda, Tambe, Umang, Mishra, Akshdeep

Kings XI Punjab

Current Squad: Miller, Vohra, Axar, Maxwell, Gurkeerat, Anureet, Sandeep, Shardul, S Marsh, Saha, Vijay, Shankar Naik, Mohit, Stoinis, Cariappa, Jaffer, Sahu, Swapnil, Amla

Released list: Johnson, R Dhawan, Abbott, Behardien

Kolkata Knight Riders

Current Squad: Gambhir, Narine, Russell, Kuldee, Manish, Suryakumar, Chawla, Uthappa, Shakib, Lynn, Umesh , Yusuf, Jackson, Ankit Singh

Released list: Morkel, Hogg, Holder, Munro, Hastings, Unadkat, R Sathish, Manan, Tait

Mumbai Indians

Current Squad: Rohit, Pollard, Malinga, Singh, Rayudu, Bumrah, S Gopal, Simmons, Vinay, Parthiv, McClenaghan, Nitish, Siddhesh, Suchith, Hardik, Buttler, Southee, Jithesh, Krunal, Deepak

Released list: Anderson, De Lange, Unmukt, Akshay, Nathu, Kamath, Guptill, Taylor

Delhi Daredevils

Current Squad: Duminy, Shami, De Kock, Nadeem, Agarwal, J Yadav, A Mishra, Iyer, Zaheer, Billings, Samson, Morris, Brathwaite, Nair, Pant, Milind, S Ahmed, Pratyush

Released list: Coulter-Nile, Tahir, Paris, Negi, Suyal, Herwadkar, Lomror

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Current Squad: Kohli, De Villiers, Gayle, Starc, Chahal, Patel, Mandeep, Milne, Sarfaraz, Aravind, Jadhav, Watson, Binny, Badree, Head, Sachin, Abdulla, Rahul, A Khan, Shamsi

Released list: Aaron, Nechim, Wiese, Richardson, Vikramjeet, Dubey, Karnewar, Tokas, Rasool, Jordan

Sunrisers Hyderabad

Current Squad: Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar, Warner, Henriques, Ojha, Bhui, Williamson, Kaul, Bipul, Nehra, Yuvraj, Cutting, Mithun, Mustafizur, Sran, Hooda, Vijay

Released list: Karn, Reddy, Morgan, Boult, T Suman, Tare