Throughout his 16-year professional career, Marcos competed with the grit and passion of a warrior. And he had a smile on his face after every match, win or lose.
Thursday at Wimbledon was no different. Marcos played the final match of his storied career in front of a packed No. 2 Court at the All England Club. With friends and family in attendance, he would fall to 17th-seed Matteo Berrettini 6-1, 7-6(4), 6-3 in one hour and 42 minutes.
The Wimbledon faithful showered Marcos with applause following the match, as he touched his heart in every direction, acknowledging the fans that gave him so much energy throughout his career. It all culminated with one final moment on the court, as Marcos bent down and kissed the grass.
"I didn't want to leave the court," Marcos said in his press conference. "It was a nice farewell. It felt amazing and I want to thank everyone for staying and giving me that last emotion. What can I say.
"It's been emotional for me, for my wife, for the whole team, my parents, coaches, agents and friends. Everybody. I want to thank them for just being there and going through all the emotions with me. I'm crying but I'm happy. I'm really excited for the future. The only thing I'm really sad about is leaving behind the fans."
Marcos' career comes to a close after more than 15 years and 623 matches played on the ATP Tour and in Grand Slams. He won 348 of them, including signature victories in 2010 over Roger Federer in Indian Wells and Rafael Nadal in Cincinnati. He also defeated Andy Roddick en route to the Australian Open final in 2006, which remains his greatest achievement.
While Marcos leaves the tour with four ATP titles (Beijing 2006, Zagreb 2007, Stockholm 2009 and Sydney 2010), as well as 11 trophies on the ATP Challenger Tour, his on-court achievements will not define his legacy. Coming from the small island nation of Cyprus, Marcos ascent was remarkable and inspired everyone, even people around the world. His legion of fans followed him in all corners of the globe, from Australia to the United States and beyond.
His trademark passion and charisma was first on display in 2006, when he not only reached the final at the Australian Open, but pushed Andre Agassi to five sets at the US Open later that year. In his autobiography 'Open', Agassi would later reveal that it was one of the greatest matches of his Hall of Fame career.
Marcos touched every fan and every player he interacted with. Even Federer.
“He also had a winner's mentality and liked the big stage," said Federer. "I think that's also one of the reasons he did well here and also in Australia when the big matches came about. Off the court, he was always a lovely guy, always very funny, easy-going, good to be around with. So I liked him on the court, off the court.
“I think for Cyprus, he did so much coming from such a small country and becoming a sporting superstar,” said Federer. “I'm sure that was a big deal at home… He's always been a joy to watch also for us players, so we'll miss him.”
As the saying goes, 'Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened.' Marcos did just that as he said farewell.