Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy set for second duel in China
Beijing: Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy will go head-to-head in a two-man exhibition for the second time in China following last year`s outlandish Duel at Jinsha Lake, organisers said on Saturday.
Golf`s world number one and two will appear at an as yet unnamed venue on October 28, reprising their one-day meeting a year earlier which became infamous for its unruly crowds and gratuitous displays of wealth.
"Rory and I have played against and with each other a lot over the past few years, and he beat me in China last time so I`m looking forward to playing again," said Woods in a press release.
"We`re good friends, but both of us love to win, so I`m expecting more great golf," added the 14-time major-winner.
"I`ve played in China since 2001 and the event last year showed me there`s still huge enthusiasm for growing the game in cities all across the country, especially as it`s again an Olympic sport in 2016."
McIlroy won last year`s event in Zhengzhou but it is remembered mainly for the behaviour of fans who stole balls from the driving range and were rugby-tackled by staff as they mobbed the players on the fairways.
The 18-hole strokeplay tournament, held to advertise a new housing development, also featured the bizarre sight of models standing at the tee boxes, helicopters, drum majorettes, fireworks and a luxury yacht.
Few details were revealed about the upcoming event but McIlroy said he was looking forward to taking on Woods again.
"It`s exciting to play against Tiger in this format. We`ve played together many times in regular four-day Tour events, but it`s different when it`s just the two of us in an 18-hole battle," said McIlroy, 24.
"Everyone knows he`s hugely competitive each time he steps on the golf course, so I know he`ll want to beat me, just as I`ll be very keen to beat him again.
"The crowds we had last year were incredible. I had never seen so many people following one match and I`m sure we`ll have more of the same this year. The support is testimony to the growing strength of golf in China and I`m looking forward to getting back there."
Event organiser Infinite Ideas International said several leading Chinese golf clubs were interested in holding this year`s show and the venue will be announced soon.