Rory McIlroy practicing at Turnberry for the British Open

Irish youngster Rory McIlroy is third favorite to win the British Open at Turnberry this weekend even though this is his first time playing in the the Open Championship as a pro.

The 20-year-old golfing wunderkind is constantly being compared to that other famous golfer who started out young - one Tiger Woods!

Speaking in Scotland today McIlroy admitted how nervous he was just talking to Tiger, never mind playing him!

"He's not just another player," McIlroy said. "I remember when I first came out and I talked to Tiger, and I was even nervous talking to him. He just has some sort of aura about him, you know? He's just an incredible competitor.

"He hits shots that ... I wouldn't be able to hit sometimes. He's not won 14 majors for nothing. And I'm sure he'll win a few more before his career is over."

"It's been more inspirational for me, rather than disheartening, that this guy is coming to win every major he plays," McIlroy said.

This is the first time that Woods has made the British Open in two years. His knee surgery last year put him out of the championship at Royal Birkdale.

Of course, last year's Open went to another, more famous Irish golfer, Padraig Harrington who won the for the second year straight - despite starting out with a wrist injury.