Monday, August 22, 2005

Maharajah - Chris's DAK Pioneers vs Leigh's Russian Guards

Italian Besaglieri Supported by German AT Guns somewhere in Russia

A Free for all was diced for which Chris vetoed. But when re rolled a Free for all still came up. No tanks or artillery anywhere -- it was going to be a long slog. The DAK had priority air.

Leigh won the dice off for table edge choice and had 1st turn as the attacker. The DAK had the deployment advantage with 7 platoons to 6.

The Russians put 2 infantry units and 2 AT guns on their right, AA trucks and AA Bofors in the centre and 2 AT guns and a large infantry Company on their left.

Facing the Russian right the DAK had 1 Bersagliari unit (Fearless Veteran), 3 Pak 36’s 5cm AT guns, a small Kampfgruppe with 2 HMG’s + C in C. Nothing in the DAK centre, and facing the Russian left 1 Bersaglieri, 3 PJK 4.1 AT guns and a 2 pioneer platoons.

The Russians tried advancing on their left and flanking with their storm group on the right of the battlefield. The DAK were thinly stretched trying to hold on their right.

The DAK beat off the Russian left losing their Bersaglieri unit in the process. The Russian left retreated with 5 stands left out of 30 after a pounding from 3 DAK platoons and air strikes. The DAK air also took out the Russian AA trucks in the centre. The Russian right continued manoeuvring round a forest losing a couple of stands which strayed too close to the DAK AT guns.

With the Russian left exposed the DAK pioneers advanced towards the Russians left hand objective killing the remaining AT gun on the way. Meanwhile the Storm group set up on the Russian right ready to attack. The DAK air came on in force doing enough damage to force the storm group to retreat to the forest.

The Russians were forced to protect their left, so Leigh pulled his 3rd infantry unit back from the centre to cover the left. This allowed the other Italian unit to move to the Russians right objective, which was now poorly defended. The DAK pioneers reached the other objective, which was contested.

Italians grabbed the Russians right objective uncontested game over: 5 – 2 win to Chris’s DAK.

The Russians were unlucky almost killing a second platoon which managed to pass its morale, this would have changed the result to a 4-3 win to the DAK.

Post mortem

The DAK air came often and in numbers 12 out of 17 turns. The Russians got possession of them twice. Which still gave the DAK 10 turns of air attacks with Henschels. Chris’s dice were hot! Must be the Italian dice gods?

Leigh admitted the Russians made several mistakes.
1) The flanking move with the storm group, which only killed 2 stands in the whole game, left one of his best units out of the action.
2) Not supporting the attack on the Russian left with the second platoon.
3) Moving the AT guns from the right allowing the Italians to seize the right objective unopposed.
4) A long game always favoured the Germans with priority air.

The extra elements for manoeuvre gave the DAK a big advantage once the Russian left had been defeated.

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