Tank Squadron (British support) vs Schwere Panzerkompanie
Allies: 1 | MarkoD
Axis: 6 | Elderik
A force of British heavy tanks was moving up into the Liri river valley when they encoutnered the spearhead of a German counterattack.
Hopelessly outmatched by the heavy armour of the German tanks, the British forces could only try to strike quickly and take the German forces off balance, before they could bring all of their superior tanks to bear.
The mission was Encounter.
The Allied list contained the following (all Confident Veteran):
HQ: 2 Churchill III
3 Churchill III
3 Sherman V (with AA .50 cals) - in reserve
3 Stuart V (with AA MGs) - in reserve
2 M10C 17 pdr SP
3 Universal Carriers - in reserve
3 Wasp Carriers - in reserve
4 25 pounders
The German force opposing them (also all Confident Veteran):
HQ 1 Tiger IE
2 Tiger IE
2 Tiger IE - in reserve
2 8-rads - in reserve
Panzergrenadier platoon (no transports)
Panzergrenadier platoon (no transports)
3 15cm Nebelwerfers - in reserve
The battlefield was a valley with some forested areas, a few hills and a pair of farmhouses. A small river crossed part of the German right flank, making a corner of the board difficult to reach.
The two German infantry platoons started off on the objectives, with the platoon on the Allied left supported by a platoon of 2 Tigers and the others supported by the Company Commander in his tank.
On the British side, the 25 pounders were set up on a hill on their left flank, overlooking most of the table and covering one objective. The Rifle Platoon positioned themselves around the other objective, which was located on a wooded hilltop. The M10Cs hid behind a small hill to the left while the Churchills (including the HQ) set up on the far right flank. From there, they could approach the objective on the same side relatively unmolested, protected by a row of forests.
On their first turn, the German infantry dug in while their armour moved forward, hoping to deal some damage to the Brits. However, their fire proved ineffective. The commander moved back out of sight, but the other Tigers hung around on the edge of some woods.
In return, the Brits also tried to dig in. The Churchills moved forward, although the 2iC got stuck in a wood. Aided by the AOP, the 25 pounders opened up a barrage against the infantry on the flank of the Churchills, causing light casualties and pinning them. The M10Cs moved up behind a small farmhouse to take a potshot at one Tiger wile staying out of sight of the other. One shot found its mark, knocking out the fearsome German beast.
The German platoon commander immediately retaliated for the destruction of his subordinate, moving up and knocking out one of the M10Cs before moving out of sight of the other.
While the Churchills were getting closer and closer to the wood behind which the German infantry and their objective lurked, further fire from the remaining M10C and the 25 pounders proved ineffective.
German reinforcements wasted no time in showing up. A pair of Tigers moved onto the German right flank, facing the 25 pounders and the remaining M10C. Their concentrated fire knocked it out. The German company commander also moved into the wood between his infantry and the Churchills to support his troops. He promptly knocked out one of the British heavies before moving back again.
The Churchills desperately moved onwards, knowing that they had to take the close objective before the trio of Tigers could obliterate the other flank or reach them. With one tank knocked out and another too far back after getting stuck, the remaining three tanks charged into the German infantry, who were already pinned by more fire from the 25 pounders. One got stuck on the way in and another was knocked out by the German platoon's Panzerfaust fire. The Tiger's shots both missed, and the Brit company commander got stuck in.
However, the Germans pushed back and the Brit tanker broke off, leaving his comrade who got stuck to the mercy of the German infantry.
The Germans re-established their positions on the flank that had just been assaulted. Meanwhile, the trio of Tigers on the other flank were moving up and opening up on the 25 pounders, knocking one out.
The last two Churchills, belonging to the Company's CO and 2iC, moved up to have another go. The 25 pounders managed to pin the infantry again and caused some damage, but the Tiger remained unharmed. In desperation, both British tankers opened up on the Tiger and managed to bail it. Next, they once more charged into they fray. The 2iC got knocked out by the Panzerfaust on the way in. When they struck back, they put an end to the Company Commander's life, too.
With these losses, the Brits had no real way of harming the heavy German Panzers, which were set to rampage around their artillery. At this point, they decided to fall back rather than waste far more lives for a small chance at victory.