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Unable to make xpath work for an HTML block of code

I have this html block:

<td><a href="#" class="">   <i class="far fa-times mr-1"></i>Cancel</a></td>

I wrote the following xpath to find this Cancel anchor, but this is not working. What am I doing wrong?

//a[contains(text(), 'Cancel')]

The following xpath works but i need to learn what am i doing wrong in the above one:

//i[@class='far fa-times mr-1']/..


  • //a[contains(text(), 'Cancel')]

    Issue: The reason above XPath expression is not working is because, above XPath looks for an anchor (<a>) element containing the text Cancel. However, the <a> element in your HTML snippet doesn't directly contain the text Cancel. Instead, it contains an <i> element and then the text Cancel.

    Solution: Change the XPath expression as below:

    //a[contains(., 'Cancel')]

    XPath explanation: The . represents the current node, so contains(., 'Cancel') checks for the presence of "Cancel" text within the <a> element and all of its descendants.