The Black Caps may be forced to wait until tomorrow's result between Sri Lanka and Australia to find out if they have reached the Champions Trophy semifinals.
Chasing 170 to win from a rain-shortened 24 overs the Black Caps have struggled to match the required run-rate with both Luke Ronchi and Martin Guptill departing cheaply.
England looked to have the game tied up when both Ross Taylor and Brendon McCullum departed but a late charge from Kane Williamson and Corey Anderson gave the Black Caps hope.
Williamson departed with three overs left after a sterling 67 from 54 balls leaving the big-hitting Anderson to try and bring the Black Caps home.
England have bowled 20 overs and if the earlier rain returns the match will be decided by the Duckworth-Lewis method.
Earlier New Zealand sprung a surprise by rushing all-rounder Anderson into the team for his one-day international debut.
Anderson shoved his way past existing squad members Ian Butler and Doug Bracewell to be a shock inclusion. He was only added to the squad this morning as an ICC-approved injury replacement for Grant Elliott who exacerbated his calf injury at training on the eve of the match.
A left-arm paceman and hard-hitting batsman, Anderson played three T20 internationals against South Africa in December.
The 22-year-old had been training with the squad to prepare for the two T20 internationals against England next week.
Anderson for Southee was the only change from the washed out game against Australia.
England had injury issues too, with spinner Graeme Swann ruled out and James Tredwell recalled.
The winner of today's match will top group A and face South Africa in the first semi-final at The Oval on Wednesday.
If New Zealand lose they could still qualify for the semi-finals but would need Australia to beat Sri Lanka on Monday. A washout would also see New Zealand qualify.
The forecast is poor, with rain predicted to set in later in the day.
New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Luke Ronchi, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, James Franklin, Brendon McCullum (captain), Daniel Vettori, Nathan McCullum, Ian Butler, Kyle Mills, Mitchell McClenaghan.
England: Alastair Cook (captain), Ian Bell, Jonathan Trott, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Ravi Bopara, Jos Buttler, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, James Tredwell, James Anderson.
Umpires: Rod Tucker (Australia), Bruce Oxenford (Australia). Third umpire: Steve Davis (Australia).
Which batting pair would be best at opening in ODIs for the Black Caps?