I started observing at the start of the 7th.
On the 6th, Bretteville fell, Magic Bridge was re-rolled and fell. June was D1. Sword was cleared. I thought the Germans were forked between covering SME and covering Bretteville.
7 went 1-9 G6A16 reserves.
The Germans opened by pushing a unit into SME. No double. The Allies did not respond by pushing south from Bretteville. The players traded impulses in SME, with the Allies using air then naval as the Germans pushed units into the area. The Allies switched to Caen, getting par with a naval bombardment. Marvin started running the trail to cover. Kevin attempted a triple off Omaha that missed a kill at PEB, but a 9 AP air bombardment at Caen gave Kevin the Adv marker he’d missed at PEB. The re-roll whiffed. Kevin cleared Juno with a division from Bretteville while a lone unit took Verson. Marvin inflicted 7 APs on Juno, punishing the attackers. On the next impulse, the Allies cleared Merville and rolled up to inflict 9 CPs contesting Caen. The German bombardment of Merville whiffed, and Kevin moved a British corps artillery to Sword, to develop his threat to envelop Caen via Troarn. The Germans ran the trail again, and the Americans cleared Port-en-Bessin. An assault on Foret needing up one was stuffed and changed the weather, allowing Marvin to send another unit to Caen before the day ended on impulse 9.
The 8th went from B to 6. Reserves: G8 A21
Marvin opened with the first of several failed attempts to destroy the Grandcamp causeway. The Allied offboards hit Bayeux, whiffed at Isigny, flipped the defenders in Troarn, and hit Caen for 3 APs. Foret was cleared on impulse 0, then Bayeux on 1, from Omaha. Nebelwerfers inflicted 7 APs at SME, and the Allies rolled up with one unit of the 3rd Canadians to clear Troarn on impulse 2. After Bayeux there was a risk to Omaha if the weather changed, but the opportunity to contest or take Troarn may have outweighed the urgency of contesting Isigny in Kevin’s mind. The two sides traded bombardments, and then the Allies took Mezidon, then contested Balleroy and finally contested Isigny on impulse 5. On impulse 6, Isigny was cleared, ending the day. Marvin made a sharp regroup on the 8th. He moved both of the SS artillery from Houlgate to Zone A where they could deploy with the 9th reinforcements and where they couldn’t be damaged by British attacks.
The 9th went from A to 3. Reserves: G17 A36
At dawn, the Germans retook the Carentan to SME bridge. The Allies stalemated at Catz and corps artillery was sent toward Caen. The naval bombardments hit Catz and Caen. After the Allies contested Bourguebus, a German counterattack forced them to retreat back to Troarn. The day ended on impulse 3 when a 10:5 into Bourguebus stalemated, putting the clamp on one side of the Caen envelopment in place, despite the poor roll.
The 10th went 0 to 7 after 3 shifts. Reserves: G5 A18
The Germans opened by running from Zone E to points south. The first Allied impulse overran Catz and sent corps artillery toward Caen. The Germans bombarded Catz, and the Allies bombarded and contested Evercy. The British naval whiffed at Caen, but the two sides traded haymakers at Bourguebus and Potigny, with all of the Brits in Bourguebus taking 2 whacks, and ready German assault group in Potigny flipped. On 3, Kevin re-rolled a 9:5 assault into Bourguebus and the re-roll also failed. The game here didn’t require an assault— Bourguebus merely needed to remain contested— but 1 CP would have allowed a follow up from Sword. The failed assault kept a German counterattack on the 11th in play. On 4, the British overran Evercy. The weather changed on 5, but Marvin did not counterattack Catz, and the weather changed back to sun on 6. The turn ended with 12 APs inflicted at Catz from impulses 6 through 8.
The 11th went 0 to 4. Reserves G14 A35
Marvin opened with an 11:4 assault into Bourguebus that inflicted only 1 CP. A double impulse or a regroup into Zone C could have assaulted at up to 18:4, needing +1 to clear, but Marvin’s situation was dire. Even clearing Bourguebus might not have allowed reinforcements to reach Caen in sufficient numbers. Kevin worked Caen to D2 with bombardments by impulse 1. On impulse 2, a 10:6 into Caen was stuffed. But on 3, Caen was cleared, including on the re-roll.
They played into the 12th, the day starting on impulse 6. Marvin had a mathematical shot at re-taking Catz or another VP, but with the fall of Catz on the 10th and Caen on the 11th, Kevin’s third WBC plaque was all but assured.
Recent expert play threatens or refutes the envelopment of Caen, and it was thrilling to see a Final “magic bridge” game that resulted in a Caen or bust line of play. Marvin chose a defense in depth instead of stuffing Troarn, but when Kevin cleared Troarn with a lone attacker, the threat to Marvin’s defense was almost unstoppable.
|Taking a break from the war to capture history.
|Former CD and laurelist Don Greenwood in action.
|Marvin Birnbaum appears to like his board position.
|Finalists with GM Mark Gutfreund.
| Mark Gutfreund [6th Year]