However, there's no guarantee the weekend will reveal a mano-a-mano showdown between the world's top two players for the national Open.
There may be one in the works at the end of the year, a world away from Ardmore, Pa. Woods and McIlroy may be in line for another exhibition match in China, McIlroy said Tuesday in a news conference.
"There might be the possibility of an exhibition game with Tiger in China at the end of the year," McIlroy said.
The two had an exhibition showdown last October called the Duel at Jinsha Lake. McIlroy won the 18-hole match 67-68.