Tiger Woods won't play next month's Dubai Duty Free Irish Open at Royal County Down according to his agent.
But Mark Sternberg did not shoot down the chances of seeing Woods join McIlroy when the Irish Open moves south of the border again in 2016 with The K Club on the table as a potential venue.
“It’s not going to be possible this year,” Steinberg said. “I know the date doesn't work out. Did Rory speak to Tiger about it? I don’t know, he may well have. As for next year, we haven’t looked that far forward yet.”
Sources close to European Tour and the McIlroy organisation confirmed in Augusta that the prospect of taking European Tour golf back to The K Club in 2016 is being actively discussed in some circles.
The club hosted the European Open 13 times between 1995 and 2007 as well as that unforgettable Ryder Cup in 2006.
With 2016 the 10th anniversary of Europe's record equalling win over the US at a venue where Darren Clarke played a hero’s role just weeks after the death of his first wife, and with the Ulsterman also captaining Europe at Hazeltine, it’s the perfect venue.
Sponsors Dubai Duty Free would also be keen to visit the Kildare area, if they can secure a June date nearer the Dubai Duty Free sponsored Irish Open.
No appearance money would change hands with McIlroy possibly set to play in Woods' season-ending charity event, the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.
The idea certainly makes sense - an iconic venue near Dublin with the quid pro quo between McIlroy and Woods guaranteeing their respective Foundations major benefits.
McIlroy has already secured a title sponsor for the Irish Open in Dubai Duty Free and promised to return favours for the likes of Rickie Fowler, Ernie Els and Sergio Garcia for turning up at Royal County Down from May 28-31.
The Rory Foundation and the European Tour are expected to make some major announcements on the Irish Open at the Newcastle venue next week.