An emotional Novak Djokovic could not hold back the tears on Sunday at the charity event he hosted at his tennis complex by the Danube River.
Although the world No.1 missed out on the Adria Tour final, the event brought back a flood of memories for the 17-time grand slam champion - who staged the exhibition while international tennis remains suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I was very emotional on the court today," the 33-year-old Djokovic told the capacity 4000 crowd as he received a standing ovation from his compatriots.
"Childhood memories started flooding back, including those of growing up on these courts and playing here as a young boy.
"I was overwhelmed and those were tears of joy after the match.
"I try to give back to where I come from and be conscious of my childhood and my upbringing.
"This tennis was an epicentre of people from my childhood days getting together for this tournament, including my former coaches. They were all here."
Djokovic beat Germany's Alexander Zverev 4-0 1-4 4-2 in his last round robin match but failed to secure his place in the final after both players and Filip Krajinovic ended with 2-1 win-loss records and an identical 5-3 set difference in their section.
Krajinovic, who stunned Djokovic on Saturday, squeezed through on the basis of having the best games differential among the three.
However, he was powerless to stop Thiem in the final, going down 4-3 2-4 4-2.
"This tournament was for a good cause and we all gave our best," Thiem said after finishing off the weekend with a 100 per cent winning record.
"Many high quality matches in a great atmosphere, in front of a full crowd, so it was a perfect weekend.
"A very big thank you to everyone including Novak and his team, you all made my first trip to Serbia a very special one."
The eight-man tournament featured a more streamlined format than what is seen on the main tour, played in the Fast4 format.
The second leg of the tour will be held in Croatia's coastal resort Zadar next weekend.
The third leg due in Montenegro on June 27 and 28 was scrapped on Saturday over coronavirus concerns.
The final leg is scheduled for Bosnia's Banja Luka on July 3 and 4.