Sumo stablemaster Shikoroyama, who boasted an outstanding popularity as sekiwake Terao during his time as a professional sumo wrestler, has died at age 60.

According to those close to him, Shikoroyama, whose real name was Yoshifumi Fukuzono, had heart disease and was prone to illness.

A son of former sekiwake Tsurugamine and the youngest of the so-called "three Izutsu brothers," Shikoroyama made his professional sumo debut from the Izutsu stable, then headed by his father, in 1979. He debuted on the stage of the makuuchi top division in the spring grand tournament of 1985.

Shikoroyama was a lightweight wrestler weighing only around 110 kilograms, but he rose through the sumo ranks with his rapid pushing technique.

The eldest of the three brothers was former Kakureizan, who competed in the juryo second-highest division, followed by former sekiwake Sakahoko.

In the spring tournament of 1989, Shikoroyama, then Terao, was promoted to sekiwake, the third-highest rank. Terao and Sakahoko created a media buzz for becoming the first brothers in the history of sumo to be sekiwake at the same time.

Serving as sanyaku, or the three ranks directly below yokozuna grand champion, for 13 tournaments in total, Shikoroyama was one of the most popular sumo wrestlers for his good looks and his sumo techniques.

During his professional career, he made appearances in 1,795 bouts and 1,063 consecutive makuuchi matches, both fourth highest on record. His 860 wins are 10th highest.

After retiring at age 39 in the autumn grand tournament of 2002, he turned to coaching, inheriting the name Shikoroyama.

After establishing his own stable in 2004, he coached former komusubi Homasho and current sumo wrestler Abi, who clinched his first career title at the Kyushu grand tournament last year.