Thursday, March 10, 2005

Camp Cromwell 10/03/2005

Thursday at Camp Cromwell
FOW 1500 pts Cauldron - training battle for Barrie v. Jim. Steve also present.
US Armour (Barrie): HQ (Shermans), Pioneers, Shermans, Lees, SP 75s + Air.v.DAK (Jim): HQ, 2 Grenadiers, 88s, 50mm a/t(2), artillery, MkIIIJ*(3)

The terrain had a plain in the middle so the DAK had no help from it at all.The Yanks got good deployment with everyone bunched on one side. The US got off to the best possible start by popping both dug in 88s with 6 long range shots.Barrie then assaulted one side of the box with armour and infantry - see 10 03 05 001 (note the DAK in Barrie's new entrenchments).The DAK counterattcked with the Grenadiers from the other side, but had no luck with reinforcements for the first 2 turns.The 1st objective was taken by the Lees, but the MkIIIs which finally showed up and supported the Grenadier counterattack which destroyed the platoon and took it back.The MkIIIs didn't survive the counterattack and the arrival of the a/tank & artillery was too little too late.
Pic 10 03 05 002 shows Barrie's troop transport system (from Bunnings hardware plus non-slip mats from Chickenfeed).

Monday at Fort Floriet:
FOW 1500 pts FFA in fairly open desert terrain (see pic 08 03 05 001)

DAK: (Nick) Pioneer coy (2 pioneer, MkIII*(3), 76mm art(4), 88s (2), mgs(2))v.BRATs (Jim) Mechanised (3 Lorried inf, Grants(3), Honeys(3), RHA(4), 2 6pdr a/t (2ea))

The DAK opened up with a murderous fire on the LHS Brit objective from their 76s & 88s. The defending inf was splatted before it could dig in, but the planned seizing of the objective by MkIIIs was thwarted by the Grants & Honeys advancing around the Huns right flank.

The MkIIIs decided the other flank looked safer and roared off across the German rear. The Honeys moved to counter them racing in parallel behind the Brat lines while the Grants made a flank attack on the 76 battery. This did not go well - the end gun was taken out but it took two Grants with it. The survivor passed his morale test but didn’t push his luck, retreated and followed the Honeys towards the other flank.

Meanwhile the 25pdrs had taken out an 88. They now had a go at the MkIIIs which were attacking the RH objective - and took one of them out. The MkIIIs decided that flank was too hot now and took off again back across to the other flank to support an infantry advance on the thinly held other objective.

The German artillery copied the RHA, targeted the Honeys and took out the command tank. The Brat 2IC climbed aboard one of the survivors and the Brat armour took off back over the left again to meet the MkIIIs.

While the RHA pounded away at counter battery fire, trying to keep the deadly (& dug in) 76s pinned down, the armour played cat and mouse on each side of a hill on the Brat left. The Germans bailed a Honey, but then the Brats got lucky, the last Grant got one MkIII and the unbailed Honey got the other.

When the RHA finally popped a 76 the Huns conceded.

The dug in German Pioneers were a scary prospect with their assault a/t of 4. The 4 76mm guns were pretty nasty too with their a/t range of 80cm & artillery range of 2.4m – the 2 88s seemed quite benign in comparison.

Similarly, the Brat infantry – vets dug in with ROF 3 backed up with dug in 6pdrs was formidable.
With such good defense on both sides it had to be very long battle - but it was never boring – both sides used their strong defense as a base for attack & counterattack. Both sides made some cunning moves and both had their lucky spells (Nick perhaps had more good dice, but Monty threw his good ones when it really mattered). Although the Brats had the last tanks, they wouldn’t have stood a chance in an attack on the Pioneers & guns, and in the end the slow attrition of the RHA was the deciding factor. Monty did well in putting the RHA in a depression safe from counterbattery fire.

Next Week:
I wouldn't mind changing to Wednesday for a while if it suits more people (Cameron for instance).Please let me know if you'd prefer a change to Wednesday, or not.

But we'll leave it Thursday next week unless I advise otherwise.

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