Thursday, 22 May 2014

Battle for Razgulaevka Station, September 1942

 I set the scene for this game in my previous post   brief-return-to-stalingrad

Here again is the overall table top

Mark's Germans were deployed within the blue lined area with 1st Bn 517th Infantry dug into the Razgulaevka station area supported by infantry guns. The Engineer company had reinforced the bridgehead and deployed in the ruins at the western end.  All the remaining forces of the Kampfgruppe would arrive from moves 2, 3 and 4 at the Southern baseline. (See this link for a PDF of Orders of Battle and Objectives)

The very much depleted Russian 124th Rifle Brigade, grouped  as one tactical unit of 54 figures, was deployed within the grey lined area in the scrub South of Gorodishche. A field gun and mortar in the town would support them using the NKVD officer as observer on an upper floor of the Mill.

I'll keep the account brief, mainly using pictures.
Two views over the Russian zone after their first turn.
Yellow numbers indicate deployed Russians.
The red on green markers are units still hidden.
2nd Battalion 112th Rifle Division is advancing over the Mechetka River bridge
Elements of 6th Tank Brigade advance up the left flank

German Engineer company dug in at the West end of the railway bridge

MMG, Anti-tank gun and infantry dug in along the station buildings and rail yard.
A -1 marker shows the MMG crew have lost a figure.
The nearest building was a good lookout point for the 150mm Infantry gun OP
 and was constantly revealing Russian  movements at "Automatic Observation" distance.
The grey cotton wool indicates Katyusha rocket bursts causing a "suppressed" check.
124th Rifles infantry are making best speed in their attack trying to use what
 cover can be provided by the scrub.
They are under long range small arms fire now.

The above photos show the progress of  light and medium companies of 6th Guards Tank Brigade. Each has a company of SMG armed tank riders on board. As the T60 and T70 approached the Mechetka one was destroyed by fire from the 150mm infantry gun on the facing hilltop and some of the riders were also lost. Subsequent morale test was "No offensive action" and basically this force did not achieve much more. The company of T34s crossed the river further back and headed menacingly towards the station, using their machine guns with some effect on the German infantry. Despite this small success Mark was now looking with worry at his threatened flank.
Two views of the Russian attack on the station area. Above at the central crossroads
and below at the Russian right flank where a crossfire from the German Engineer
company was being felt.

In the distance are green counters showing the advance of 1st battalion 112th Rifles
who are too distant to have been revealed yet.
At this point my excitement in the attack must have got the better of me as I completely forgot to photograph some best bits. The remains of the Russian 124th launched close assaults on the station buildings and registered some success on the left, pushing Germans back across the railway lines, but being stalled in the centre. Mark had skilfully brought his 75mm AT gun up to face the T34s but was thwarted in deployment by a "suppressed" dice roll from the random Katyusha fire! The T34s stormed across the rail line,  poor Mark rolling low for both his 150mm firing direct and a rear shot from an AT rifle, so they shot up the artillery, dropped the tank riding sub-machine gunners to assault the German trenches, and rolled round the flank.

But now a turning point was approaching.
Mark had brought up the Flak Battalion in the centre and deployed them just beyond
the little village to cover the open ground behind the station into which the T34s were heading

The 88mm is set up at bottom right of this photo and you can see a
company of  Panzer IIIs is confronting the T34s

Mark had managed to bring his 75mm AT gun into action on the railway line and got 
a rear shot into a T34 - only Light Damage though! However the 88mm made
 up for it scoring a Heavy Damage. That was enough to brew up the T34 and I awaited my Morale check with trepidation.......

More in the next posting........

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