Skirmish at Mechili - The Matrix Games version of West Front
Skirmish at MechiliBy D. Bevard
33 - 14 - 56
Mechili, 100km W of Gazala, Libya: [Best played against Human opponent] By mid-January 1941, General O'Connor's Commonwealth forces in the Western Desert had captured Bardia and surrounded the Italian defenders at Tobruk. The 7th Armoured Division did not wait for the fortress to fall, instead its brigades headed west in an effort to bag more of the crumbling Italian Tenth Army and possibly grab the port at Benghazi as well. Seeing an opportunity to trap Babini's Armored Group at Mechili, General Creagh dispatched the 4th Armoured Brigade to destroy Babini's tanks before they could rejoin the infantry divisions. However, luck went against the British in the early morning hours of the 24th. The cruiser regiments quickly lost contact with one another as they fumbled through the darkness and only the 6th Royal Tank Regiment and a squadron of armored cars located the key junction of desert tracks crossing Cyrenaica. Fortunately for Colonel Rendell's 6th RTR, Babini had already retired to the west leaving the reinforced III "Babini" Medium Tank Battalion as a rearguard. All luck ran out for the British tankers as armored cars of B Squadron/11th Hussars clashed with an outpost, shattering the night with machinegun fire and alerting the Italian armor!