Version: 1.00 (August 2008)
AI or PBEM: AI included
Author: Ian Gelderman
On 10 July 1941 German Panzer Group 4 renewed its offensive toward Leningrad with two Panzer Korps, XLI Korps (Reinhard) direct at Leningrad through Luga and LVI Korps (Von Manstein) through Soltsy and Shimsk to cut off Leningrad from the south and east.
For a while the offensive moved swiftly with the advanced elements of 8 Panzer Division attached to LVI Korps arriving east of Soltsy by dusk on the 13th July. At the same time, Soviet command observed how LVI Korps was strung out along the road to Shimsk.
With Reinhard's XLI Korps diverted well to the north the day before, Soviet command was convinced their moment for a counter-offensive had come. The Russian diverted reinforcements already on the way and reorganized them into northern and southern pincers to cut-off and surround Manstein's LVI Korps.
On the 15th July the Soviet hammer struck. While the German 3 Motorized divisions was busy fending off heavy attacks on their positions at Gorodishche and rear echelons fought off raids across the Shelon River in the south, 8 Panzer Division found itself quickly surrounded and under attack by the Soviet 70th Rifle Division and parts off 21st Tank Division.
Now the 8 Panzer Division had to yield. It reorganized for all-round defense and during the 17th July completed its breakout to the west to link up with LVI Korps after heavy fighting.