The dice rollers (from left to right Myself, Josh, Gerry, Dave and Andrew) in our last Sudan game for the Year…..but that does not mean we will stop playing colonial, just moving onto Anglo-Zulu War, the Boer Wars and the North West Frontier.
The great game we decided to play was a mix between the battles of Tamai and El Teb. With two British squares, made up of 13 x Infantry Companies (4 x Highland Companies and 1 x Naval Landing Party) a Naval Machine Gun battery, a foot battery plus the 10th Hussars, their mission was to clear all Mahdist forces from their front and burn the two villages behind the the low lying ridge line to their front.
And of course the Mahdist mission was to inflict as many causalities as possible on the invaders and push them back to the sea, as they had done only a couple of weeks before to the Egyptian forces under Baker.
The game was well played and hard fought with most of the action going on in the centre of the table. However on about turn five Andrew through in a flank attack which saw a number of British units forced back in disorder and a couple over run. In the end the British might of said that they achieved complete victory, breaking two of the four Mahdists brigades and capturing one of the villages. However on the Mahdist side they would say that they broke a British square and overran a number of units, forcing the British to withdraw in much confusion….such is the fog of war…..there were many graves to dig after this battle on both sides.
The Naval machine gun battery with the landing party in close support. The machine guns were to prove most devastating.
The advance of the two brigade squares..already one company is finding it hard to keep up
The first charge of the Mahdi broke the right hand British square but this attack was not supported well enough by the Mahdi commander and the British soon regained lost ground…but they did break a square.
At the same time as the right hand square was broken the left square also came under massed attacks, only to be saved by the guns of the Naval Brigade.
The only British cavalry on the board for the day….they did well even though they did not achieve victory until the last two turns of the game
Mahdi causalities after the first attacks
Tribesmen pour in the gap made in the broken square.
An over view of the board on turn three….very little movement on the Mahdi side, but that was to change
British commanders make their next moves
The Mahdi make their next move…suddenly from behind the hills swarm another great wave of warriors.
Turn four and more tribesmen pour from the scrub
A company of Highlanders and the 10th Hussars move to stem the latest Mahdi attack on the British left flank.
Wave after wave of warriors throw themselves onto the British lines
Mahdist riflemen fire across the battlefield from the protection of one of the villages
With their right flank secured the British quickly send two companies around behind the Mahdist positions to capture the rear most village.
The Mahdist guns were well served and inflicted some heavy causalities on the invaders.