This might be of some interest to you gentlemen; it's a transcription of part of PRO file AIR 20/4698 "Ceylon: Japanese Attacks", dealing with the Indian Ocean Raid. If you find it interesting, I can post more of it.
JAPANESE AIR ATTACK ON TRINCOMALEE
9th APRIL, 1942
C.I.C. (C) 3. AIR STAFF
JAPANESE AIR ATTACK ON TRINCOMALEE ON 9th APRIL, 1942.
Own Air Reconnaissance.
1. After the attack on Colombo on 5th April, 1942, it was considered that the enemy warships operating in the Indian Ocean would rendezvous with those operating in the Bay of Bengal, and carry out a joint attack on Trincomalee. Consequently, a "Catalina" flying boat was ordered to carry out a cross over patrol at a depth of 400 miles east of Ceylon, covering an area from which the enemy might make an approach. At 1517 hours on the 8th April, the crew of this flying boat sighted and reported three battleships and one aircraft carrier approximately 400 miles due east of Ceylon, steering north by west.
2. Another "Catalina" was airborne at 0256 hours on the 9th April, and carried out a cross over patrol approximately 200 miles east of Trincomalee. At 0715 hours, the enemy fleet was again sighted, and the "Catalina" began to signal the enemy's position and composition. The signal which began "Large force..." broke off and, as nothing further was heard from this aircraft, it is presumed to have been shot down.
Early Warning System
3. At approximately 0520 hours on the 9th April, plots were picked up by R.D/F. at Elizabeth Point. These plots were indefinite in character, and appeared to move through a bearing of 60° to 100° at a range of from 15 to 30 miles. The "red" warning was sounded in Trincomalee at 0520 hours, and was in force for over an hour, but the alarm was not sounded at China Bay. The plots finally disappeared and the "raiders past" signal was sounded at Trincomalee at 0645 hours.
4. At 0706 hours, plots were again seen approaching along a bearing of 78° from Trincomalee at a range of 91 miles, and a positive track was established when the raiders were between 35 and 40 miles away. The "red" warning was sounded at China Bay 0718 hours, and the aerodrome was bombed at 0725 hours.
5. As the first plots were picked up when the enemy was 91 miles away, adequate warning was given to all defence forces.
Japanese Offensive Action
6. At 0715 hours the enemy was sighted thirty miles from the coast. The bombers were seen at 15,000 feet in "Vics" of six or seven aircraft in line astern, and were escorted by Navy "0" fighters. Some of the fighters were weaving between the bomber formations, while others provided "top cover" at 20,000 feet.
7. As they neared the target area, the first wave, which consisted of six formations of six or seven Navy type "99" dive bombers, lost height and carried out a level bombing attack from between 9 to 10 thousand feet. Each formation attacked a different objective, and all bombs dropped were in salvos of six or more. After dropping their bombs, the aircraft circled left, breaking formation and losing height.
8. The first wave was followed by further formations of six dive bombers escorted by fighters, which broke formation, and carried out dive bombing and machine-gun attacks. It is possible that some dive bombing was also carried out by aircraft that had previously taken part in the first level bombing attack.
9. The dive bombing was followed, almost immediately, by a high level bombing attack, carried out by twin-engine bombers. Neither the height nor the composition of this force is known, but one pilot states that he saw two large formations of twin-engine aircraft escorted by Navy "0" fighters.
10. Between 100 and 130 aircraft, consisting of Navy '0' fighters, Navy '99' dive bombers and what are thought to be Navy type '1' twin engine bombers, took part in the attack. The Japanese fighters were not camouflaged but were painted a light cream, with conspicuous red roundels on the wings and fuselage. The upper surfaces of the bombers were coloured a dark green and considerable difficulty was experience by all our pilots in observing enemy aircraft against jungle background.
11. It is not possible to assess the number of bombs dropped, but some of the larger craters are estimated to have been caused by 500 kg. bombs. It is believed that 250 kg. bimbs, as well as a large number of anti-personnel bombs, were also dropped.
12. A dawn patrol of three "Hurricanes" which was orbiting the aerodrome at 15,000 feet, was vectored to meet the raiders, which were sighted at 0715 hours thirty miles from the coast. At 0700 hours, two further sections of "Hurricanes" were flown off; one was ordered to orbit base, and the other the eastern perimeter of the harbour. Simultaneously, two sections of "Hurricanes" were scrambled from the "Cocky" (Kokkilai) satellite. The last two sections climbed rapidly to 16,000 feet.
13. At 0720 hours, the leader of the "Cocky" flight observed bombs bursting in the harbour. He ordered his sections into echelon, sections line astern, and dived steeply to attack, intercepting the enemy at 10,000 feet. The combat soon resolved itself into a "dogfight". The leader of the section orbiting base was given details of the enemy's approach by R/T. and took his section to 21,000 feet. After maneuvering to get the sun behind him, he saw a large formation of enemy bombers at 9,000 feet. He ordered his section to echelon starboard and dived to the attack, passing through a heavy anti-aircraft barrage at 17,000 feet. The section was split up and "dogfighting" ensued.
14. The following fighters were airborn to intercept the enemy raid: -
No.261 squadron - 16 "Hurricane II"
1 "Hurricane I"
No.273 squadron - 6 "Fulmars"
Where possible, our pilots carried out dive and zoom tactics, and several were able to make two attacks before they were engaged by Navy "0's". Whenever our own fighters were forced to accept combat with Japanese fighters, they were always heavily outnumbered.
[the report goes on to cover losses, claims, anti-aircraft fire, damage to airbase facilities, and No.11 squadron's attack on the Japanese fleet]