Sunday, 13 December 2015

Tamai 1884 - Part II & III

Tamai continued on for a couple more game sessions with the action really only beginning in session II.  The Dervishes did a gradual encirclement of Colonel Davis's square which, after much pressure, resulted in it's complete destruction. Colonel Buller's square held strong during session II but by the end of session III was in complete disarray.  Fortunately this dervish wing was not able to bring as much pressure to bear on Buller's force and it was able to hold its own.  By the end of the third session Buller's column was attempting to redeploy in an all round defence on the hill in front of the British base camp to await the onslought of the full dervish host...or what was left of it. The steady trickle of bloodied, redcoat refugees from Davis's square suggested a taste of the drama about to unfold.

This picture shows the beginning of the dervish encirclement of Davis.

The Royal Irish Fusiliers prepare for the first human wave attacks

The Black Watch were facing Buller's square and did not come
 under any pressure until the square collapsed.

See the sneaky dervishes giving the square a wide berth
as they move around the flank.

The Dervish Camelry now gets involved.

Meanwhile Buller's square continues to be sniped at but holds firm.

The 7th Bombay Native Infantry.  There were no Indian troops at the real battle.

Work continues in the British basecamp, now protected by improved Zaribas

Valiant Colonel Redvers Buller confronts an angry Dervish elder who shakes his fist at him.
Go home infidel.  You are not wanted here!  30mm Willie figure form the 70's.

A never ending mass of dervishes approach Davis.

The Dervish Chorus Line....alalalala

The rear of Davis's square is punctured.

The British are now in disarray, pouring a panicky volley onto their tormentors.  

Captain O'Malley of the Royal Irish Fusiliers  keeps a stiff upper lip.

Another shot of Howard's fine Zaribas

General Graham monitors the debacle in the valley below.  Colonel Fred Barnaby
is dispatched by General Graham to take control of the situation but is quickly wounded
and out of action.. You can see his lone figure in blue just before a mahdist hacked
off his left hand. Burnaby punched the offending Mahdist out cold with a right cross and calmly picked
up his unused shotgun and trundled off the field for medical attention.

Its said that the severed hand was eventually covered in gold leaf and presented by Mahsud Musa as a trophy to
the Holy One...the Mahdi.

See also a journalist from the London Times quickly sketches the action.
This will be front page news.  Read all about it! 

Captain Mad Dog Fielding of the Royal Warwickshires implores his men
to advance against the dervish mass.

Dervish success is bought with heavy casualties.  Dervish Army morale
is starting to crack.  A few troops begin to leave the field......
however the dervishes can afford them. 

The red line gets thinner...

....and thinner

The front of the square continues to hold...for now.  The boys in green
are the King's Royal Rifle Corps (KRRC) affectionately know as
Colonel Saunder's KFCs 

Fighting for their lives.  

Finally the dervish mass troops slam into Buller.  The Camel Corps repulses
several waves.

The two dozen devils of the Bashi Bazouk Scout Troop rout thousands
of fatigued mass dervish troops to rout before becoming
engulfed in a swarm of jihadiya riflemen.

By now Davis's square has totally collapsed with the British
fighting back to back where possible.  

Here they come again!!

The encirclement is now complete.

The last moments of B Co. 9th Royal Artillery Regt.

Colonel Stewart's Cavalry arrive from
their meandering tour. Too late to save the day.

Buller's square is also cracked open but there is no panic and the troops hold firm.

The Yorks and Lancs prepare to deliver another volley into  their
worthy opponents.

Out of frustration, General Graham orders the Sikhs to indiscriminately
bombard the swirling mass in the valley below.

The remnants  of Davis's command form
battalion squares in a last stand effort.

Somewhere in the valley a bugle began to sound the call for retreat....nothing more was then heard from them....

Tune in for the conclusion of Tamai. 


  1. great pics, Mike! I can still hear the accompanying music... :-)