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Tiger Woods set for Irish tournament

Tiger Woods has confirmed he will make his first appearance outside of the United States this year at next month's JP McManus Invitational Pro-Am tournament at Adare Manor in Co Limerick.

Woods, who finished tied for fourth on his return at April's Masters in Augusta following a knee injury and revelations about his private life, will step up his preparations for the Open at St Andrews with an appearance at the event on July 5 and 6.

“I am very happy to be joining this outstanding field,” said Woods.

“Like my own foundation, I understand the importance and necessity of raising funds to help deserving individuals. This tournament does just that.”

The 34-year-old American missed the cut at May's Quail Hollow Championship, withdrew from The Players Championship seven holes into his final round due to a neck problem and last week finished tied for 19th behind Justin Rose at the Memorial Tournament.

Woods has won 14 majors, with two of his three Open successes coming at St Andrews, the home of golf and venue for the 150th Open from July 15 to 18.

Twelve of the world's current top 15 ranked players have confirmed they will play at the JP McManus event.

Woods is joined by Lee Westwood, Jim Furyk, Ian Poulter, Ernie Els, Luke Donald, Paul Casey, Rory McIlroy, Martin Kaymer, Robert Allenby, Padraig Harrington (the 2005 champion) and Camilo Villegas.

Meanwhile, McIlroy will look to reconnect with his putter as he aims to build on his top-10 finish at the Memorial last Sunday at this week's St Jude's Classic in Memphis.

The Holywood man is one of a quartet of European big guns in the field teeing off at TPC Southwind this evening ahead of next week's US Open, alongside Westwood, Poulter and Harrington.

“It was a good week at the Memorial,” McIlroy said.

“From tee to green I played really well, but having said that I shot five under over the weekend and I felt that I could have been 10 or 12 under for the weekend as I hit the ball great.

“It was a little frustrating for me on the Sunday as I couldn't really get the putter going.”

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