European No 1 Lee Westwood and close friend Darren Clarke believe Tiger Woods will bounce back from his public humiliation to dominate the golfing world again.

"One of the things you learn about Tiger over the years is that mentally he is very strong," Westwood told SkySports on Thursday. "He has been able to put a lot of things to the back of his mind and just concentrate on his golf, so I would imagine he will just do that."

Clarke received sterling support from Woods in the wake of his wife Heather's death in 2006 and the Ulsterman does not believe the storm of controversy surrounding the world No 1 will affect his golf game.

"I would imagine, through everything that is going on at the moment, he will be back out and playing to the level we all aspire to again," Clarke said. "He will win and he will be back winning majors and winning tournaments and we are just going to have to try and catch him and play better than him.

"Tiger has been the best player in the world for a long time and I have no doubt he will come back and still be the same player. He is a good friend of mine and has always been very supportive to me.

"He will come out and start winning again. He will play before the Masters but that will be the first Major up and with him going without winning a Major this season I am sure he will be more keen than most to get back in the winner's circle then."

Yet in common with the rest of the golfing world, Westwood confessed that he has been taken aback by the revelations that have emerged regarding Woods' private life over the past two weeks.

"Tiger is a very private person so nobody has really ever got close to him," Westwood said. "I think he likes it that way. He's kind of put a wall up and nobody really know what goes on. So all the events are as much as surprise to me as they are to everybody else."