Monday 29 March 2021

Huerta de Pablo - Battle Report, Turn 2


Yours Truly, caught by Alex, with measuring stick in hand, towards the end of turn 2.
Hit me with your rhythm stick. Hit me! Hit me! Das ist gut! C'est fantastique! Hit me! Hit me! Hit me!
All but two of the following shots was taken at the end of turn 2. This turn saw the continuing build up for the action with all but French 2nd Division making an appearance - and even 2nd Division is now active and about to enter via the NE road [point D].

I'll start with the initial deployment photo (turn 0) - so you don't get lost.

British 3rd Division makes its entry late in the turn. Its delayed entry isn't a bad thing as things are getting congested further up the SW road.
The Highlanders and Guards, with divisional artillery and cavalry support, approach San Pablo over Black Briar Stream. On the northern road, the French column of 4th Division is just visible.
At the northern outskirts of San Pablo, French 4th Division has made its entry via the northern road [E]. The fight for San Pablo may well come down to who can get a secure foothold first, and the French are leading with two battalions of veteran 4th Legere.

I think I've made a mistake with the French here. In retrospect, it might have been worth advancing the French cavalry (5th Division) to hold up the advance of the Highlanders and Guards. Only time will tell if holding them in reserve will prove a better option. The terrain is not cavalry country.
In the SE sector, British 2nd Division is now largely deployed and moving in to attack the southern outskirts of Huerta de Pablo. This might be a tough fight, two battalions of 4th Vistula are holding this sector of the town. 
The British have had much of the initiative in turn two. Before French 3rd Division can move to intervene, the British have attacked Huerta de Pablo from the highground (Cresta de Pablo) west of the town.

Consequently, they are beginning to deploy just short of the town, forming a line around High Farm Hill.
From Cresta de Pablo, the British (1st Division part) has swept down onto the western edge of Huerta de Pablo. Having got the better of the firefight, on the very last card in their deck - Melee Resolution - they charge home and fierce hand to hand fighting ensues in the houses and streets of the town.....
Neither side gets much advantage from the initial melee rolls (I roll until a conclusion is reached rather than have ongoing melee) but, after three rolls each, 71st Highland Light Infantry and 2nd Btn. KGL wrest the western side of the town from Legion du Midi (routed with very heavy loss) and Regt. Irlandais (falls back shaken with heavy casualties).

It was a tight fight, largely won by the British getting 22 initiative points to cycle through the last third of their deck, and being able to soften up the French defenders with several volleys of musketry to which the French could not equally respond. Drawing a melee card as their last card was simply icing on the cake - which they had, and ate.
It already feels as though the French in Huerta de Pablo are holding on by their fingernails. They are outnumbered 2:1. Can they hold on long enough for other French Divisions to get organised for a counter stoke: Will the French actually launch one even if they do? 

Part 3, coming soon....


David Morfitt said...

Looks wonderful, as always. Good photography, too, of course, with long shots and close ups (I do dislike those wargames reports that are all long shots which is far too many!). I am very jealous of the wargames room and table! :-)



pancerni said...

Brilliant table and troops, great scenario, excellent play by. Thanks, what a battle report should do.

Steve J. said...

A beautiful looking game as always!

Bill Slavin said...

A very nicely written and photo-documented report. I would agree with David, not being a fan of reports where all you have is long shots. The whole purpose to gaming is to see your toys on the table, no? (Which I can, now, having mastered thee art of clicking on the picture for a close up. Duh.)

Дмитрий Фомин said...

An excellent sight! Thanks for the report, I will wait for the third part.

piper909 said...

Really nice set up and report, and this gaming space is beyond brilliant!!