The final registration for the auction closed on Friday, in which 1122 signed up including 281 capped and 838 uncapped players. While Gayle wasn't retained by the Royal Challengers Bangalore for this season, Stokes, who played his maiden season of the IPL past year, had been the most expensive acquisition of IPL 2017.
England Test captain Root is a new IPL entrant after opting to play for England in their T20 tri-series against Australia and New Zealand.
Dwayne Bravo, Carlos Brathwaite, Evin Lewis and Jason Holder will add the Caribbean flavour to the auction.
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The in-form Glenn Maxwell and Shane Watson, who was mulling calling time on his IPL career past year, too have entered the race with Mitchell Johnson, who has retired from worldwide cricket but continues to play in the Big Bash League. It is also confirmed that there are three players from the associate countries.
Hashim Amla, who hit two centuries for Kings XI Punjab in the 10th season will be hoping for a high bid with compatriots Faf du Plessis, Quinton de Kock, David Miller and speedsters Morne Morkel and Kagiso Rabada. West Indies and Sri Lanka both have 39 players each while New Zealand has 30.
Afghanistan, too, will see 13 players along with eight from Bangladesh, two from Ireland, seven from Zimbabwe and two from the USA.
From the Blackcaps, skipper Kane Williamson, Colin Munro and Tom Latham will be the most important players in the auction.
Stokes has been cleared by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to play in the competition where a year ago he earned a record £1.7m at Rising Pune Supergiant.