Monday, 9 August 2021

Sharp Practice: ¡Regreso al Valle de Los Tres Cojones!

Having been in the same pod as Phil and his beautiful Neapolitans at the En Avant weekend he dropped me a line to see if my Italians fancied a return to the Valley of the Tres Cojones doubling up with Andy for an 110 point a side game facing the British under the combined command of Phil and Jenny... 

Having seen the depredations of the heretic British in the Valley of the Tres Cojones local landowner Juan Honcho had raised a small group of fighting men in support of His Most Catholic Majesty Rey José I.

The British are having none of this and despatched Major George Naipier and the 52nd Foot (Oxfordshire Light Infantry) to capture the brave Juan!

Fortunately for Juan the allies of his most noble king had learnt about the dastardly British plan and troops of the army of the Kingdom of Italy are sent to stop them. Arriving at the farmstead Primo Corporale Zoff and his line Volteggiatori moved through the lemon tree grove to reconnoiter the situation.

Skirmishers of the 52nd arrived under the command of Lieutenant Frederick Bentinck, immediately hiding behind a wall!

Not that it protected them from the musket fire of Juan's group of patriots, Bentinck being struck by a musket ball and knocked out!

With their officer down, Sergeant Rick O'Shea ordered the skirmishers to return fire!

Killing two of Juan Honcho's brave and loyal men...

Never fear Juan! The brave Capitano Rossi entered the field of play marching boldly down the road at the head of the Fucilieri of the 4° Fanteria di Linea. Avanti valorosi soldati d'Italia!

With the arrival of the Fucilieri Primo Corporale Zoff and his line Volteggiatori moved forward to cover their advance...

As ahead the sun shone off the barrels of the 52nd Foot's muskets!

The Volteggiatori moved forward firing at the ranks of British infantry as the Fucilieri deployed into an attack column behind them.

Whilst the British waited behind a hedge and presented arms at the advancing Italians...

Meanwhile new forces arrived on the field of battle. First a unit of the 1° (Real Italiano) Cacciatore a Cavallo under the command of Sergente Altobelli. Avanti mio Cacciatore!

Then two groups of 95th Riflemen under the command of the infamous Lieutenant Dickie Blunt!

Unbeknown to the advancing 95th two groups of Italian troops had been stationed in one of the local buildings...

And they deployed to stop the 95th's flanking move, although two brave men of Tuscany fell to the accurate rifle fire!

An overview of the battlefield shows the British beginning to envelope Juan Honcho's farmstead...

Despite Lieutenant Bentinck still being hors de combat, Sergeant Rick O'Shea ordered the 52nd's skirmishers forward to capture Juan Honcho before more Italians arrive!

Then more Italians arrived! The so-called 'bei raggazi' - the Volteggiatori of the 1° Reggimento Fanteria Leggera led by Tenente Baresi deployed supported by the Cacciatore a Cavallo.

The 'Pretty Boys' from Milan soon got stuck in firing at the advancing 95th and killing one of the pesky greencoats!

More Volteggiatori fire saw the 95th take shock.

Unfortunately the two groups of troops who had been based in the farmhouse decided they wanted to shoot at the 95th as well...

Their volley catches the Volteggiatori in the rear killing one and inflicted some Double Shock on them! Oddio!!

Meanwhile having their advance towards the 52nd screened by the Volteggiatori orders the Al Doppio! (Pas de Charge) and with a cry of Viva l'Imperatore! the Fucilieri of the 4° Fanteria di Linea charged into the British troops!

Bayonets flashed. On both sides men fell dead. Shock was taken. But it was the bruised battered and bloody British who were forced to withdraw!

On the Italian right the Fucilieri of the 5° Fanteria di Linea arrived under the command of Tenente Totti (who Andy kept calling Tutti Fruiti!)

Deploying into line they fired a massive volley into the 95th Rifles, forcing one group to break and leaving the second leaderless.

Back on the left Zoff's Volteggiatori found themselves assailed by the 52nd's Skirmishers commanded by Sergeant Rick O'Shea...

Bayonets levelled O'Shea orders his men to charge the battered Volteggiatori....

Who crumbled and broke under the British attack. Mamma Mia!

This action saw the Italian Force Morale drop to six, which whilst not as low as the British at the point was worrying, especially as there was now a large group of enemy skirmishers to the rear of the 4° Fanteria di Linea!

Spotting the danger Sergente Altobelli moved the Cacciatore a Cavallo to engage the enemy skirmishers.

But before the 1° (Real Italiano) Cacciatore a Cavallo were able to charge the skirmishers...

Sergeant Rick O'Shea orders the 52nd's skirmishers to charge the cavalry!!! Che diavolo?!

The Cacciatore are pushed back by the 52nd's skirmishers, losing two riders in the fracas!

A detached group of the 52nd under the command of Sergeant Will Kilmore fired at the Fucilieri of the 4° Fanteria causing some Shock...

But an attempted charge into the flank of the Italians came up short (very short, the British advanced one inch!)

Meanwhile the 4° Fucilieri kept firing at the main body of 52nd and eventually the weight of fire forced them and Major Naipier to flee the field of battle!

Tenente Baresi's Volteggiatori of the 1° Reggimento Fanteria Leggera turned their attention to the 52nd's skirmishers and opened fire into their flank... 

Whilst the wounded Sergente Altobelli ordered the Cacciatore a Cavallo to advance towards the 52nd's skirmishers again... Avanti mio Cacciatore!

Who unable to evade the charge of the 1° (Real Italiano) Cacciatore a Cavallo, are broken and routed!

On the right a final volley from the 5° Fanteria di Linea smashed into the remaining 95th Rifles who fall back and the British Force Morale drops to zero. Viva I'Italia!

A resounding victory for the army of the Kingdom of Italy and an enjoyable game against Phil and Jenny. The Pas de Charge worked well, despite the 4° Fucilieri having to attack across an obstacle, and Andy's deployment of the 5° Fucilieri, when the eventually arrived, into a defensive line made an impregnable barrier the 95th could not pierce. Juan Honcho was saved!

1 comment:

  1. What a splendid game...great terrain, lovely figures and some really dramatic action!