Mediterranean Fleet deployment in continuation.
At intervals through the day and during the 11th the various units of the Fleet detached to refuel in Malta. At this time the main body of the Mediterranean Fleet was miles south east of Malta, where it was sighted and reported by an Italian civil airliner. Late in the evening following the return of all the refuelled units, the Fleet turned for Alexandria.
To the north east of Malta positioned in caorns that a convoy would be sailing from Malta were 4 Italian destroyers, 3 torpedo boats and 4 MAS boats 12th - During return passage to Alexandria, at hours, miles escorf of Malta, and about 70 miles north of the convoy, the 3 Italian torpedo boats launched torpedo attacks on the northernmost unit of the Fleet, which was AJAX, all of which missed. AJAX was equipped with type radar which was a long range air search set and of little use in a surface engagement.
McCarthy believed that he had been in action against 4 destroyers and 2 cruisers. This action is known by the Italians as the Battle of Cape Passero The gunfire drew other cruisers of the Mediterranean Fleet to the wo,fe, but they arrived too late to see action.
At hours the petrol storage compartment exploded, blowing the roof off A turret roof, the cairnz gun fell into the sea and a fire was started. The rest of the Fleet remained cruising to the west of Crete.