New Zealand cricket legend Daniel Vettori is among those questioning why India didn't go for broke as they chased a big England total at the World Cup.

Match commentators Sourav Ganguly, a former Indian captain, and Nasser Hussain attacked India for a lack of urgency as they tried to overhaul England's impressive total of 337 at Edgbaston.

Indian supporters could be seen leaving the ground early as their team, needing plenty of boundaries, pushed the ball around for singles instead.

They still had five wickets intact at the end, despite falling 31 runs short.

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Final batsmen MS Dhoni, with 42 from 31 deliveries, and Kedar Jadhav, with 12 from 13, had decent run rates. But it was way short of what India needed.

On ESPN's CricInfo, Vettori praised England's tactics saying they forced India to attack down the ground on a slow pitch.

But he was also bemused by the lack of urgency.

"I thought the (England) game planning was great," said Vettori.

"I also thought that Dhoni and Jadhav didn't have the intent. I would have expected to see them clearing the front leg and trying to hit sixes every ball.

"But there was still a lot of noodling it for one. They just had to go all out to try and win the game. It didn't matter if they lost because it felt like they were going to lose anyway."

Fellow analyst Murali Kartik, a former Indian cricketer, said "it was just a question of the intent".

"I don't think they could have won, and you can't blame them (Dhoni and Jadhav) for the loss…but at least go down fighting."

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England hit 13 sixes to one as they restored their title credentials by handing the Indians their first defeat of the tournament.

As India plodded towards defeat, Ganguly was critical saying: ""I don't have an explanation for that. You asked me the question but I can't explain these singles.

"You can't be chasing 338 and still have 5 wickets in the end. It's about mindset and the way you look at the game.

"The message had to be clear: no matter where it comes and no matter where the ball lands you have to find the boundary. A dot ball at this stage!."

Former England captain Hussain agreed, saying: "I am completely baffled. What's going on! This is not what India needed. They need runs. What are they doing?

"Some Indian fans are leaving now. Surely they must want to see Dhoni go for his shots, even if he slogs it off in the air. It's a World Cup game, top 2 sides, give it a go!

"Indian fans would want their side to do a little bit more. They want their side to go down with a fight. Risk it to win it."

Indian captain Virat Kohli defended the pair saying: "We kept losing wickets and that doesn't help in a big chase, but credit goes to England in the end. It's up to discussions with the two guys who were in there.

"I think MS Dhoni was trying really hard to get the boundary but it wasn't coming off.

"They bowled in good areas and the ball was stopping, hence it was difficult to bat towards the end. We have to sit and assess and improve on things in the next game."

Fans were furious on Twitter, including one who penned a letter to Dhoni saying he was "dismayed and shocked".

One Twitter wag joked that a measured innings from Dhoni had left India in a great position for the next day.