Turn 2 and I was looking to clear up Sollum and Bardia. I was definitely not going to get as far as the commonwealth did historically before 21 Panzer entered the scene. Ultimately, my top goal was to push Jason’s Italians out of Tobruk, but that was looking doubtful also. I felt I had been aggressive enough, but that was not the case. One error I made and Jason failed to catch also is that turn 2, the Commonwealth troops begin rotating in and out of the theater as Greece became a focal point historically. Churchill and the home office folks began pulling troops out of the African front to help the Greeks and I was supposed to lose 4th Indian on turn 2, but they stayed in the game on my error. Fortunately for our game they played a minimal role as even though they made it up to Bardia, I was unable to push that Italian unit out.
I managed to push up to Bardia and get it almost completely surrounded but was unable to defeat the defending Italians there. Due to the rough hex north of Bardia that I was unable to get to, I was also unable to put it out of supply. 7th Armored did clean up the pipsqueaks out in the open.
Ultimately, time ran out on my attempt to invest Tobruk before 21 Panzer makes landfall and in turn 3, I would make a newbie mistake that I won’t make again, as it has really put me on my heels.
Turn 3 and I was to exchange 6 Australian with 9 Australian and 7th Armored with 2nd Armored as the Africa to Greece merry-go-round continued and my heart goes out to Wavell as I experience what he had to deal with in reality. I really screwed the pooch here though, as I was allowed to make a clean exchange where the leaving units were located on the map. I however failed to realize this and brought them on in the reinforcement locations of Alexandria, Mersa Matruh and the Road to Cairo leaving the entire front end of my line empty as I was also to lose the 70th without replacements.
I should have realized something was amiss, it just didn’t seem right, and now I’ve got a lot of work to do as Jason was able to use extended move to fly down the Via Balbia to get in my grill on the eastern map.
So, suddenly because of my error, I have some stranded units out in Libya that need to hightail it back to the east map before they get run over. Unfortunately, my infantry units move much slower than his armored units. As my blokes retreated down the Via Balbia, we left some garrisons in Sollum and wherever else I could. Ultimately I was able to get back with the units on the highway but Selby was in a bad spot.
I got my reinforcements (badly played exchanges actually) into position because 21 Panzer was pushing hard and set up some defensive boxes around the highway and ridge. I wriggled Selby through the German units and onto the east map. I decided to make the best of a bad sitch’ and set up to prevent a catastrophic loss on turn 3 or 4 by losing Alexandria, holding on until 7th Armored returned.
I’ve got a pile of work to do now to try to push the German units back. Turn 4 gives Jason 15 Panzer and 90 Light, just what I needed. But after this, his reinforcements are few and far between, while I get units on almost every turn. We’ll see…..
Thanks for reading.