Battle of Veghel
The game was played between John & I at John's house on 20/1/08. John played the Allies and I the Germans. John provided the Shermans, British infantry, that bloody Stuart, the trucks littering Hells Highway and the Panthers. The rest of the kit was mine
The 86th Field Artillery and the XXX Corps AA Regiment to the north of Veghel at the start of the game. Airfix 25pdr & Quad, Airfix M5. Skytrex 3.7" AA; Matchbox Jeep and a Milicast Sexton
2/506PIR defending Veghel, looking up Hell's Highway. Revell paras, Cararama Jeep, Elheim 57mm with SHQ crew
SdKfz-251/9 of the 107 Panzer Brigade (Cromwell) advances past the wrecked British trucks on Hell's Highway. This track was to spend most of the game warily watching the paras in the north of the town
6 FJR advance supported by their captured Sherman (Corgi with a Matchbox turret). The German plan was to capture the railway bridges in a pincer movement between the Fallschirmjäger and the Panzers. Unfortunately the 7 Morale rating of the FJ meant they just were not up to the challenge. Paras are a mix of Orion, Revell, Esci and Airfix
107 Panzer Brigade start their move to outflank Veghel and meet up with the Fallschirmjäger. Dragon Panthers, Skytrex SdKfz-251/1 and in the distance is a Matchbox JgdPz-IV/70(V) recently re-released by Revell. British trucks are the old (since re-modelled) Frontline 15cwt.
I/2 FJR, detached from 6 FJR, made an advance on Hell's Highway, hoping to sneak through while the defenders of Erde were busy with 6 FJR. This wasn't to be, 3/501 PIR charged after them an reduced their strength by 50%. Figuring that they couldn't possibly pass their morale check with such poor troop and heavy casualties the 3/501 PIR pulled back to attack 6 FJR. This was a mistake as I rolled a 1 and the remnants of I/2 FJR sat astride the road for the rest of the game
KG Richter charge in to Veghel to be confronted by 2/237GIR. The German commander figured they had a good chance of holding on and would at least take some of the yanks with them It was not to be - wiped out without inflicting a single allied casualty. Airfix Afrika Korps to the left Pegasus Berlin Defenders to the right. US troops are a mix of Matchbox infantry and Airfix marines
Panzergrenadiers outflank Veghel as they head down the railway line to the bridge over the Aa.
The SdKfz-251/21 is by Milicast, with three HMG's it is a lethal infantry killer.
A Panther reaches the level crossing before the bridge over the Aa. Soon after this pic was taken the Panther destroyed the 3.7" gun
Intimidated by the German armour 2/506PIR runs away shaken. Unfortunately the Germans didn't have the infantry available to exploit the gap in the US defences
Turn 7: most of the 6 FJR huddle shaken in the pine woods by the canal. The last surviving element in good morale is the captured Sherman, which is being a complete thorn in the Allies side, having earlier destroyed the 86th's 25pdr and shot up a couple of para stands. Its about to be Bazooka'd by elements of 3/501PIR. They are destined to miss and suffer fatal retaliatory fire. Although the Sherman would eventually go shaken the dense wood stopped it retreating it would be many turns before the paras could finally finish off the tank.
Ajax bounces shells of of the Panther. Excellent shooting: three hits! All of which fail to do anything but dent the paint work. The Panther's revenge was swift and terrible
2107 Panzer Grenadier Abt moves for the road bridge over the Aa. However the SdKfz-251/1 was raked by US MG fire and brewed up, the Drilling panicked and fled, demoralised. This left the Panthers without even meagre infantry support.
The Panthers forge across the Aa. One was to be close assaulted by a British command team and some US paras, both died in a hail of 75mm fire
Panthers break out across the canal, heading for the open and paratrooper free fields beyond. Unfortunately the Brigade commander has his halftrack shot out from under him as he crossed the railway bridge
The brigadier dies in the woods at the hands of the glider infantry
German reinforcements: II/21 FJR supported by an SS Jägdpanzer-IV/48 (Crusader)
British reinforcements - the Grenadier Guards enter Veghel down Hell's Highway
2107 Pz Abt turns around to face back towards the Guards. There is plenty of open ground south of Veghel where the tanks can use their big guns to best advantage
The Guard's Stuart sneaks around the Jägdpanzer's flank. Despite the Jagdpanzer turning to face the Stuart it still managed to get a shell from the pip-squeak little 37mm through the front armour and killed it. The Stuart's victory celebrations didn't last long, it was soon blown away by 2107 Pz Abt
Guard's infantry skirts around Veghel
Panorama late in the game. 2107 Pz Abt waits as the Guards push forward through Veghel.
The Guards infantry supported by the last remaining tank of 44th RTR push over the railway bridge in an attempt to flank the Panthers
Meanwhile the Guards tanks keep the Panthers occupied to the front
The Guards' Shermans were no match for the Panthers sitting at the end of a long killing field so the Panzers fended off the Guards' challenge with ease, leaving them sitting astride Hells Highway, so a marginal victory for the Germans. Although I was in a position mid-game of owning a bridge and having the highway cut, the terrain was too close and I didn't fancy Panthers vs. Bazookas wielded by Veteran paras .
The game could have easily been a British victory, one bad morale roll by the Panthers and the Germans could have been without their armour. Their infantry was certainly no match for the US paras. As they had to make 15 morale rolls and never went worse than pinned I was very lucky
It was a very enjoyable hard fought game
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