Woods responds to Thomas' smack talk

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Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Justin Thomas grew up idolizing Tiger Woods, but he's not scared of the 14-time major champion.

Thomas is paired with Woods in the opening round of the Hero World Challenge, and expressed his excitement to play with the 41-year-old, but also took a playful jab during his Tuesday press conference.

"I'm also looking forward to trying to kick his ass, to be perfectly honest," the reigning PGA Tour Player of the Year said.

On Wednesday, it was Woods' chance to respond to the 24-year-old's comments.

"There's nothing wrong with that," Woods told reporters after his Pro-Am round Wednesday. "It goes both ways."

Woods is set to make his long-awaited return Thursday, teeing off with Thomas at 12:05 p.m. ET.