Captain Stuart Broad has implored England not to underestimate a New Zealand outfit four positions inferior in the International Cricket Council's Twenty20 International rankings.

England and the Black Caps will meet for the three T20Is this month, the first of which gets underway at Eden Park in Auckland on Saturday, when Broad will resume the leadership of the T20I unit.

The fast bowler missed the two clashes against India late last year due to a heel injury, and this week returned to topflight cricket - in two warmup matches against a New Zealand XI in Whangarei.

The tourists won the first match and last the second, with right-armer Broad accruing six wickets, including a hat-trick, across both fixtures at the Cobham Oval.

"We've got a hugely talented side. But we're coming up against a very strong New Zealand team as well and we know in white-ball cricket they're very dangerous," said Broad.

"There are dangerous players throughout their line-up, so we'll have to be right on the money. I'd imagine it will be a feisty contest, like we always have with New Zealand, and both teams will be going hell for leather to win.

"It was nice to get back on the field and get some overs in recently. Obviously, it's been quite a good build-up for me, with four-over spells rather than going straight back into the impact of Test matches.

"From a personal point of view, it was nice to bowl my overs and also pick up a couple of wickets. From the team point of view, we had some good tests out there. We were challenged and it's always good in your warmup games to play strong opposition because you test yourselves as closely as you can to a full international."

The visitors are likely to select to spinners - Samit Patel and James Tredwell - for Saturday's series opener, while Broad is looking forward to big performances from batsman Eoin Morgan and Jos Buttler. The pair were key in Whangarei, with the latter's back-to-back half-centuries particularly promising.

"Despite the disappointment of losing off the last ball in the second match, I thought we got some really good things out of those games - especially the likes of Jos Buttler and Morgan, the way they batted," he concluded.