| By Brian Coleman

The Mutua Madrid Open is always one of the biggest and most important tune-ups for the French Open, and with four American men into the second round of the clay-court tournament, could this be a sign of things to come in the next few weeks?

The Madrid draw began with five Americans in the main draw, the first time that an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 clay event featured that many men from the United States. And besides Donald Young’s retirement in his first-round match against Grigor Dimitrov, the Americans have four players in the second-round.

On Monday afternoon, 18th-ranked John Isner, 39th-ranked Sam Querrey and 54th-ranked Steve Johnson advanced to the second-round in Madrid. Thirty-seventh-ranked Jack Sock pushed through on Tuesday to make it four Americans in the clay court tournament’s second round.

The knock on the American player has been too much of a reliance on power with no solid return game, a bad combination for playing on a clay surface. But the Americans hope to debunk the myth about them as we approach late May.

Is the early success in Madrid a sign of things to come as we approach the French Open? Only time will tell.

Brian Coleman

 Brian Coleman is the Senior Editor for New York Tennis Magazine. He may be reached at brianc@usptennis.com