Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Club Night 26th February

Luke and I set up our second campaign battle, an encounter engagement with the British assisted by Duncan. Having rolled the terrain, one half of the table has a small village, a depression and some salt marshes, while the other half was completely barren. And Luke won the roll for choice of edges and so occupied the village with his motor infantry and the depression with a troop of Crusaders, while the armoured cars move out on the British right. Against this the Italians deployed their guns around their two objectives interspersed with Infantry, while the rest of the infantry and the Servomentes prepared to advance on the village under the watchful eye of their CO.

On this flank with a cry of 'Avanti' the Italians advanced as quickly as possible with the guns shelling the village, while the anti tank guns stopped the armoured cars sweep on the other flank. With the British pinned down by the artillery fire the Italians took light casualties, while the direct 75mm gun from the self propelled weapons took a toll on the British. The Italians manged to occupy one building and then make an assault on the British. Unfortunately one of the buildings was too far away to reach, so despite success the British launched a counter attack and drove them back into the building where they had started. Both sides where then stuck in this position exchanging desultory fire, with neither possessing the strength or firepower to drive the either out.

The British CO had moved to support his infantry and ensue that they stayed in the fight, while the Italian CO had been driving his men forward. With the arrival of the Shermans starting to take a toll on the Italian artillery with semi-indirect fire and the Grants destroying the Sevormettes, the British began to bypass the Italian infantry and advance on the enemy positions. The British CO personally engaged and destroyed his Italian counterpart before he was himself destroyed by direct fore from the guns. The Grants then drove through the survivors and where in a position to occupy the objective, when the leaderless Italians broke and withdrew from the field of battle.

On the other side of the battle field, after the destruction of the armoured cars, there was a lull as neither side could summon any reinforcements, then in short succession the Italian tanks and British Crusaders arrived and a typical sweeping engagement commenced. As the tanks maneuvered to try and gain advantage the British took a very humane approach of forcing the Italian tankers to bail out before destroying the empty tanks. Although it was a close fought thing the British just about had the upper hand and this proved decisive as the Italians took enough casualties to break them.

This gave the British a narrow victory and closed it to 8VPS to the Italians against the British 6. The next battle will see a cauldron engagement with the British as the attacker as they push their advantage, while the Italians attempt to cut off this breach in their lines after their over ambitious advance after their successful defence of their lines on the first engagement.

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