Indian Premier League
Indian Premier League [Reuters]

Some of the biggest names in world cricket are up for grabs at the Indian Premier League (IPL) player auctions, which start on 12 February.

With well-funded IPL teams getting ready for the battle for talent, the auctions will witness a scramble for netting highly valued stars like England's Kevin Pietersen and other foreign players.

The list of 514 players made available for the auction includes 87 foreign players (50 capped and 37 uncapped). IBTimes UK takes a look at the top five players who could make an impact during the seventh edition of the IPL.

1. Kevin Pietersen

England's Pietersen watches his shot during their one day international cricket match in Edinburgh, Scotland
Kevin Pietersen [Reuters] REUTERS

The South African-born English cricketer was sacked after England's poor performance during their trip to Australia, which included a humiliating white wash in the Ashes.

After his sacking from the national team Pietersen has emerged as the star attraction at IPL auction, with teams eager to sign him up without worries about losing him midway on account of duties for national side.

Pietersen started his IPL career in 2009 with Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). He was with RCB for two years and signed for Delhi Daredevils in 2012 before missing out on last season's IPL due to an injury.

The all-rounder has managed 634 runs in 21 matches played so far in IPL, averaging 42.26 including an unbeaten century with the Daredevils in 2012. Pietersen can also contribute with the ball and has bagged seven wickets so far.

The axed England international could be the target of a bidding war between the franchises during the player auction, which continues on 13 February.

2. Mitchell Johnson

The left-arm pacer made his debut in the IPL last season and played a crucial role in helping the Mumbai Indians win their first title.

Johnson was the key bowler for Rohit Sharma's side, picking 24 wickets from 17 matches.

The Australian was the third highest wicket taker of the competition last season, level with Mumbai teammate Harbhajan Singh.

He was impressive during his national side's Ashes victory over England on home soil and his contribution helped Australia register a 5-0 victory over their arch rivals.

Mumbai could use 'Right to Match' in bringing Johnson back to their side. However, the other franchises would do everything possible in signing the player during the auction, especially due to his immense success in recent times with Australia and in the 2013 edition of the IPL.

3. Shaun Marsh

Shaun Marsh (Kings XI Punjab)
Shaun Marsh [Reuters] Reuters

Marsh has been a powerful hitter with the bat and had contributed significantly to his only IPL side so far, Kings XI Punjab.

The Australian has been with the Punjab side since the beginning of the League in 2008. He missed the 2009 season and the early part of the 2010 season.

Despite missing for over a season, Marsh as managed 1903 runs in his IPL career from 50 matches. The left-handed batsman has an impressive batting average of 44.25 and has scored one century in the shorter format of the game for Kings XI.

The addition of Marsh to sides such as Chennai Super Kings, the Challengers or Mumbai Indians will bolster their batting powers. This makes him a prize catch on Wednesday, the first day of the player auction.

4. Morne Morkel

Morkel made his IPL debut with the Rajasthan Royals in 2009 and spent two seasons with the team.

The South African pacer failed to impress during his time there, playing four matches during his two-year spell.

The 29-year-old made a switch to Delhi Daredevils in 2011. During his first season with his new team, he bagged 13 wickets from 11 games.

The 2012 season of IPL saw Morkel trouble the batsman with his pace and he was the highest wicket-taker of the season with 25 wickets.

Morkel's poor performance during 2013, when he managed only seven wickets from 10 matches, will not stop teams from chasing the star player.

5. David Warner

David Warner
David Warner [Reuters] Reuters

The 27-year-old made his IPL debut with the Delhi Daredevils in 2009 and he was with the Indian Capital team until the end of the 2013 edition.

Warner paired up with Virender Sehwag to demolish opposition bowling, contributing heavily to the team's exploits.

Warner's impressive record with the bat and his immense contribution on the field in terms of spectacular catches and brilliant run-outs could see him gather attention from the franchises. He has scored 1,435 runs in 55 matches in the IPL so far.

Ross Taylor, Dwayne Smith, Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh and Yusuf Pathan are some of the other players who could make it big in the seventh edition of the IPL.