Tiger Woods could he heading to Ballyliffin for The Irish Open

Phil Mickelson left shakes hands with Tiger Woods after the second round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville Kentucky

"Carnoustie can be a brutal golf course and it was brutal that year", he added.

The three-time Open victor has missed the previous two championships - at Royal Troon and Royal Birkdale - but will return for his 20th appearance this year.

The 14-time major victor, who has won the Claret Jug on three occasions, made his comeback earlier this year after spending 16-months on the sidelines with chronic back injury issues that has required four surgeries during his career.

Dubai Duty Free's decision to commit to sponsoring the event for another four years was a major boost as it means there is a minimum prize fund of $7 million which makes it a highly appealing option for the top players in the game. He'll gear up for the British Open by taking part in the Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass this week.

A second-place finish at the Valspar Championship in March was Woods' best finish at a tournament since 2013. The former world number one compared his rivalry with Mickelson to that of veterans Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer suggesting they always kept an eye out for their rivals' progress when they were playing the same event.

Wells Fargo Championship Golf
Tiger Woods could he heading to Ballyliffin for The Irish Open

Woods' 240-yard approached rolled through the back of the green and stopped on the fringe, but he buried an 18-foot eagle putt to get back to even par for the tournament.

The Open returns to Carnoustie for the first time since 2007 when Woods finished joint 12th when he was seeking a third successive victory.

Harrington also said he thought Woods would be "right on form and ready to go" in the Open Championship at Carnoustie this summer.

Woods begins play Thursday at 1:52 p.m. EDT on the first tee.

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