Rory aims to show his skills

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RORY McIlroy will aim to show he has learnt the lesson of two years ago when he goes head-to-head with Luke Donald in Dubai tomorrow.

The European Tour money list title is on the line, just as it was when McIlroy faced Worksop’s Lee Westwood on the same Earth course at the inaugural Dubai World Championship. Westwood won their duel by two shots and went on to victory, while the young Northern Irishman ended up third after admitting that he lost the psychological battle in that opening round.

“It was tough to fully concentrate on my own game when you’re looking at the player beside you,” McIlroy said.

“I feel like it’s something I’ve learnt because when I go out with Luke in the last game I’ll only be trying to concentrate on myself and making sure that I can play the best I can.” The situation this time is that McIlroy will become the circuit’s number one only if he wins and Donald, leading by more than £680,000, finishes outside the top nine.