Counter Attack Near Khakov
20th May 1942
By the 20th of May 1942 the Soviet South-Western Front's pincer movement around Khakov had ground to a halt. The 21st & 28th Armies had made dangerous salient into German lines. The Germans were determined to eliminate this threat and trap the Soviet forces in a pocket. To this end elements of the 3 & 23 Panzer Divisions and the 88 Infanterie Division were to launch a counter attack to eliminate the salient
This scenario represents the northern German counter attack and the Russian attempts to fall back in good order and form another defensive line. Its based on a historical battle but I've reduced the infantry strengths to make the game more manageable. In any case information on infantry strengths at this time are tricky to get hold of.
Its worth noting that the German counter attack on the south of the Salient was started five hours before the Northern attack
Order of Battle
Soviet forces are deployed on the map as shown. The lines on the map represent the rough position of the front lines, however elements may be deployed in depth behind the line. At least 2/3rds of the stands have to be on the front line. This doesn't apply to the tanks. The tanks of the 478th may be attached to any other unit the player wishes. The Staff of the 21st Army may be deployed as the Soviet player desires.
All Soviet stands, excepting tanks, start the game dug-in
The Germans start off table, they can enter 12" either side of the points indicated by the map. The elements of the 23 Panzer are reinforcements and do not enter turn 1.
The red lines are roads.
The blue lines are streams they do not incur any movement penalty for tracked or half tracked vehicles, wheeled vehicles take a 1.2 turn to cross the streams. The banks offer -2 cover for CD, 5+ save for WPD against direct fire for infantry only
The gray built up areas offer medium cover -3 for CD, 4+ save for WPD
The wood is an open wood.
The green dots indicate rows of trees and high hedges
The brown lines are crests. Any AFV touching is allowed to take up hull down positions. In general crest break LOS. The dark brown crests are taller than the others and may see over the sand coloured crests.
The game starts at 4:00pm and ends at 10:00pm with 1/2 hour turns this gives 12 turns. KG Gollwitz does not enter the board until start turn 3 (5:00pm)
As there is an attack going on in the south then Russian stragglers may enter anywhere along the south board edge. Roll at the start of each turn. Randomise where they enter and move them 6" in from the edge. If they start or move in to LOS of any German forces within 24" they are removed from the game. Roll 1d6. 1-3 indicates the number of Russian stands that enter - they are considered to be part of the same company. 4 or 5 indicates no troops. A 6 after turn 3 indicates the troops of the 23 Panzer division will enter. For each Russian stand that enters roll d6. On 6 the infantry stand is replaced by a PTRD stand
All stragglers are either shaken or demoralised (50/50 chance). The 21st Army staff is considered superior to them all. Other commanders must take command
If the Russian hold Vergelevka or the Ridge line with point 219 on it they have won a decisive victory. To hold the town there must be 12" wide corridor from the town to the east board edge with no Germans in it. To Hold the ridge there must be no Germans behind the ridge.
If the Russian manage to exit 40 stands, including 2 tanks, off the east edge of the map they win a minor victory.
If they exit 30 stands its a draw
Any other result is a German victory
It was not a good day for the Soviets. They were forces back out of the Salient, though the Germans failed in their bit to surround the Russian forces.