'We did not extend any formal invitation to Rory,' tournament director Greg McLaughlin told GolfChannel.com Insider Brian Hewitt. 'It must have been a miscommunication.'
McLaughlin added that he thinks very highly of McIlroy and hopes to have him included in the event for several years to come.
A story in the Irish Independent quoted McIlroy as saying, 'The invite came right out of the blue and it was fantastic to get an invite from the organisers of Tiger's event to compete in the Target World Challenge, and I was thrilled that they would want to invite me considering I'm only just starting out on my career.
'It was hard to say no but we've written to the organisers explaining the predicament I'm in, and besides I have 30 more years to compete in Tiger's event, so I had to politely decline.'
Whether or not he was offered up a spot in the limited-field event in Thousand Oaks, Calif., McIlroy will be in Europe, focusing on trying to earn a tour card.
'It would have been a great way to end the year but at the end of the day, I have to focus first on my schedule and try and stick to that,' McIlroy was quoted in the newspaper.