England captain Ben Stokes and New Zealand captain Tim Southee
England captain Ben Stokes and New Zealand captain Tim Southee took part in a photoshoot on Mount Maunganui beach

Captain Ben Stokes says he does not know the limit of what England can achieve as they look to carry their stunning form into the two-Test series in New Zealand.

England have won nine of their past 10 Test matches in thrilling fashion.

The first Test against the Black Caps, a day-nighter in Mount Maunganui, begins on Thursday at 01:00 GMT.

“It’s gone well and we’ll try to implement the same things we have done,” the all-rounder told BBC Sport.

“We’ll look to entertain the people who come to watch us and who are staying up late at home.

“I hope we can go out there with the same mindset and mentality we’ve had for the 10 Tests before this.”

England’s stellar form has included chasing 299 in 50 overs on the final day of the second Test against New Zealand in June, then successfully pursuing an English record 378 to beat India at Edgbaston.

In the first Test against Pakistan in December, they piled up 506-4 on the first day in Rawalpindi, setting them on the way to a historic 3-0 series win.

Asked how far his team can push their aggressive style, Stokes said: “That’s a good question and an answer I can’t give, because I don’t know. Who knows where this team can go?”

England have recalled Stuart Broad to their XI after the pace bowler missed the Pakistan tour following the birth of his daughter, a decision Stokes called “very easy”.

“There wasn’t really a second thought picking the team when Broady is around,” said Stokes.

New Zealand will hand a Test debut to pace bowler Blair Tickner, 29, after Kyle Jamieson and Matt Henry were ruled out earlier in the week.

There could also be a debut for one of Jacob Duffy or Scott Kuggeleijn, who joined up with the Blacks Caps squad on Tuesday night to provide pace-bowling cover.

The home side have resisted calling up Trent Boult, who is fourth on their all-time list of Test wicket-takers but gave up his central contract last year.

The match goes ahead despite New Zealand being in a state of emergency after Cyclone Gabrielle hit the northern part of the country.

Mount Maunganui escaped the worst of the weather. The teams were able to have net sessions on Monday and Tuesday, then practised in bright sunshine on Wednesday.

“We’ve been lucky there was a tent over the nets, so were able to train,” said Stokes. “The cyclone hasn’t helped preparation, but when you look what it’s done there are a lot more important things than getting a Test team together.”

England have not won a Test in New Zealand since a 2-0 series win in 2008. They drew 0-0 in 2013 then lost 1-0 in both 2018 and 2019.

This series is not part of the World Test Championship, the final of which England cannot reach despite their impressive form.

Stokes took over as captain following a wretched run in which England won only Test in 17. Despite the turnaround in results, and the manner in which they have been achieved, the captain does not believe his team are playing under the pressure of expectation.

“I don’t go out there thinking of sustaining that, but sustaining the way that we play,” said the 31-year-old. “If you play good cricket that will dictate the result.

“Regardless of how you try to operate in a Test, if you don’t play to the capabilities that you want to you’re probably not going to come out on top.”

England’s revolution and the birth of their swashbuckling style came at the beginning of last summer with a 3-0 series win against New Zealand.

Since then, the Black Caps have lost not only Boult but also all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme, who has retired from international in cricket.

Kane Williamson stepped down as Test captain in December and was replaced by Tim Southee, who is set to lead in a home match for the first time.

“It’s a great challenge to play against a side that’s been playing some great cricket,” said Southee.

“I’m very excited about the next couple of Test matches. It’s always something to look forward to, it’s always played in good spirits and the sides get on very well. It’s a series that the guys have been looking forward to.”